As writers its vital we look back to see how far we have come, what worked, what didn’t go so well and what we can learn for 2016.
Here are 7 questions a writer can use when looking back on 2015:
- What was your biggest writing achievement in 2015?
- What writing issue did you overcome and how?
- Which writing worries were unnecessary in 2015?
- How did your writing outlook evolve over 2015?
- Which one aspect of your writing would you do differently?
- What were your 2 biggest distractions in 2015?
- What was the best piece of writing advice that you received in 2015?
As I love quizzes and questionnaires here are my answers:
- Completing the second draft of my novel. It was an achievement because I detested the first draft and wanted to bin it. Instead I rolled up my literary sleeves and re-wrote 77k words.
- Writer’s Block. I went through a really bad patch after my second draft. No matter how hard I tried to write the third draft I just couldn’t write a single thing. Cue the world’s worst period of writer’s block. I became frustrated, paranoid and an absolute pain to be around. The way I overcame my writer’s block was sitting down in December and giving myself some writing freedom. I allowed myself to write whatever I wanted. I just sat at the table and let my fingers type. This was quite radical for someone like me. Looking back now I think I forced myself into writing the third draft and I wasn’t ready for it. Sometimes you have to just go with the creative flow.
- Worrying about what other people think. I spent a lot of 2015 worrying about what people thought about my writing. This was fuelled by some hurtful comments about my blog and writing from some non-writers / people who know me outside of writing. Towards the end of the year I decided to change my approach. I said to myself ‘who cares what people think?’ – I love being a writer, I enjoy writing, blogging and I have the guts to share my work (believe me – its takes real guts to put your writing out there for the world to see). Since stopping worrying about what the rest of the world thinks of me and what I put out for the world to read I have become a much happier person and writer. I am never going to please everybody.
- A more relaxed outlook. At the start of the year I was on edge, anxious and impatient about my writing. I wanted fast and immediate results – a finished book. Over the year I have really changed, particularly in the last few months. I have learnt the importance of patience and the benefits of letting ideas stew. I have ditched all my anxieties and gone back to enjoying writing again. This has worked wonders and I recommend it.
- Listen to my gut instinct. I didn’t listen to myself enough during 2015. It is quite a skill to cut out the noise and listen to what your gut instinct is telling you about a project or a piece of work.
- Phone and Pinterest. I am starting to reap the benefits of putting my phone away for long periods of time during the day. I am trying not to pin so much but it is addictive.
- Books take time to write. Books cannot be written in a matter of weeks. Some takes years to write and that’s not a bad thing. Ideas need time to develop and mature.
Have you looked back on 2015? How was it for you?
Let me know some of your answers to these questions?
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/113305058@N08/14652676018″>Come Away With Me</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a>