Perfecting Your Writing Workflow and Trying New Things
This is the last post in this series! We’ve covered a lot, I hope that you have found some tools to further help you in your writing career. Whether it be in tips about honing your craft or growing an audience.
As an independent author, the possibilities are endless, but everything comes down to you. So you have to pick your battles, allocate your time wisely and stick with what works for you.
In this last post, I’d like to give you an outlook as to what I’m planning on doing in 2019 to further ‘Side Hustle’ my writing career. And who knows, I might be able to shift and leave out the ‘side hustle’ part and become a full-time writer!
Continue Perfecting Your Writing Workflow
In the previous post I talked about trying different things in terms of your writing, from building a relationship with potential readers to become better at the craft.
Since there are so many possibilities you need to test what works and what doesn’t. Make an analysis. For all the productivity geeks, make an 80/20 analysis. Which 20% of your efforts produce the most desirable outcome?
In terms of becoming better at my craft, it’s two things: write more and read more. Simple.
In terms of growing an audience, Medium works best.
In terms of earning more money with my writing, it comes down to publishing on Medium.
Continue what works and pick the things you like doing the most.
Then keep those gems in your writing routine and expand on them. Create a workflow that works for you. How to do that? Do one creative thing every day and one for marketing/growth. You’ll be amazed at what you can achieve if you do this consistently.
Creating Future Plans
Besides perfecting my workflow, I still want to try new things to improve myself as a writer. I have several projects in mind.
Finishing my First Novel
This is the heartbeat of my writing. It’s the thing I enjoy doing the most at the moment. It’s hard work and difficult at times, but sitting down every morning and see where the story leads is wonderful. I type and I type until I have a first rough draft. To hell with consistency, spelling, grammar or lousy prose. Sculpting and perfecting comes later!
I have read a lot about how successful writers structure and write their novels and I’ve been using techniques from different writers. I structurally plot the book in table form (a trick I borrowed from J.K. Rowling) and as I said I cram down 500-1,000 words on paper (almost) every day (as suggested by Stephen King).
Contrary to what I’ve read, I edit along the way too. I do this because of two reasons, to give the perfectionist in me at least something and to keep reminding myself of all the plotlines and ideas I need to follow up on in the rest of the novel.
I use Scrivener to write my book in. I have dozens of pages and folders filled with ideas, research, character sketches, made up history, and without spoiling anything, a lot of fantasy inventions.
If all goes to plan I think I’ll be able to finish the entire novel into a solid book in about a year.
Then, the dream is that the book will land in the hands of as many readers as possible. That’s the real challenge.
I feel I need to do something different and daring. Amazon Kindle publishing is great, but I feel it’s too crowded. Sure, I’ll keep building relationships with more readers, but I’m aiming not for hundreds of readers, but preferably thousands (OK, if I admit it millions, it doesn’t make sense to limit my dreams ;-)).
I might try to get an agent and try the traditional route and send my book to multiple publishers. I’m not sure.
I have a Kickstarter-esque idea I’d like to try out or use something like Patreon. Time will tell.
Publishing Short Stories
I will continue dropping one short story every month if I can. At least until the end of 2019. I just enjoy writing them so much. It’s a great way to become better at writing, explore ideas, and just play. I’ve written about the reasons why you should write short stories and I still stand by them.
Then, at the end of next year, I will publish a second collection of short stories. I already thought of a title. Check out my first one here.
Medium posts result in the most traction. This holiday season will have an extra reason for celebration because I’m about to cross the threshold of 20,000 views per month. That’s crazy.
Naturally, things like this come down to luck too. About 15,000 of those stem from a post on Facebook by the incredible writer Paulo Coelho. I’m beyond grateful for that. If you would have told me this a year ago when I started out I wouldn’t have believed it.
I’ll continue sharing the lessons I’ve learned in this new world of writing. I’ll also strive to read more books and share the insights from other and combine them with my own observations. I’ve found my ‘subject’s’ so to say. Whereas a year ago I had no clue what to write about on Medium besides posting my short stories, I now have something (hopefully) interesting to share to help you on your path.
On that note, I’ve noticed that a lot of people reach my own site by searching for answers to questions like ‘how to write a short story’, ‘generating short story idea’s’, ‘how to structure a short story’, and the like.
It got me thinking, I’ve learned and documented a lot about this. I once started out with no clue how to write a short story either, until I did because I was willing to learn.
Perhaps I can make it easier for people starting out by assembling all the tips, tricks, and other information into a course! I’ve always wanted to build one.
That’s it! 13 Posts about Side Hustling your writing career. I hope you’ve found at least one tip you can apply to your own writing.
Let me know what you liked best or where you have additional tips. Is there anything you think I could still address?
Thank you for your attention and time. I hope it was well spent!
If you want a summary of all the Side Hustle Posts, you can find it here.