How I Overcame the Challenges of Writing A Book

By Jackie Haley
jackieleehaley@yahoo.com

You’ve probably heard that approximately 81 percent of Americans feel they have a book in them and that they should write it, but they just don’t know how to get started. I was in this group for most of my life.

When I began my journey writing my first book, I was too confident in the beginning, then I hit a brick wall. There were issues I didn’t know how to fix and places where I didn’t even know where to begin. I would end up staring at the computer screen, wishing the problems would magically fix themselves. No luck there. Quite honestly, my lack of confidence would get the better of me, but then I realized all the work I had done would go to waste if I didn’t continue. 

I was not going to let that happen. I rolled up my sleeves, and after many challenges, I found strategies to get me to the finish line. Now, I have just released my third book with two national endorsements and many reviews, and I’ve been doing TV and radio interviews about my book, Brenda’s Wish.  

If you find yourself in a situation where you have obstacles in your writing process, here are three strategies to help you break through like I did.

Get Organized: One strategy that helped me move forward was getting organized and setting a schedule. Plan your writing schedule, daily or however often you can write, and make sure you stick to it. In doing that, you must set aside time realistically. 

Writing is not your life right now. I’m guessing you have other priorities, such as a home, a family to take care of, a job, and maybe you have a club or organization you’re involved in. Make sure you don’t ignore your priorities, but you must find the time to set aside for your writing.

Find your Motivation: When I was writing my first book, my friend had been diagnosed with terminal cancer. We were devastated. She was an amazing friend, and I wanted to support her in some way. At that point, I decided to get my book published and dedicate it to her. I found my motivation. It gave me what I needed to move forward. I now had a timeline to get it done because she didn’t have much time left. Fortunately, she was able to read the story and see the cover design. We also raised funds in her honor for the Bliss Cancer Center.

This was my motivation. It kept me going. If you’re working on a story, but you don’t have the determination to finish it, this is the best tool. Find a cause, a reason, or something that will keep you writing and moving forward. You’ll hold yourself accountable, and you’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish when you’re determined. Keep that motivation in the front of your mind as you write your story.

Focus on the Prize: When I would get writer’s block or overwhelmed by the edits I needed to do, I would have to stop for a minute. Writing a story is no small task. If it were easy, everyone would be an author. I was determined to become a published author, so I decided to focus on that. I also broke down my story into chapters and celebrated after I finished each one. It was far less intimidating than focusing on the entire book. I took time to appreciate the work I completed in each chapter. It kept me moving forward until I wrote those sweet words, “The End.”

When you’re facing challenges, keep your eye on the prize. You will be a published author. This is an amazing achievement. Celebrate the small accomplishments along the way, and before you know it, you will have a released book in your name.

For more strategies on getting in the right mindset, such as addressing writer’s block and exercises to keep you moving forward, get access to my free eBook The Writer’s Mindset Challenge. Email me at Jackie@DreamToAuthor.com with “Bookpress Blog” as the subject, and I will send you a free copy.