Thanks to the great response to my post last week, we'll definitely continue Tip Tuesday. Topics can be anything related to writing craft, research, querying, blogging, marketing, inspiration, and more. If you've got a tip you'd like to share, please e-mail at agentspotlight(at)gmail(dot)com.
Our first tip of the new year was sent in by Kristin Lenz whose previous tips include #103 and #112. Kristin is a social worker and writer who contributes to the YA Fusion blog. This week she's interviewing Dandy Conway, district sales manager for Random House Children's Books. Go here to learn more about how she supports authors as a liaison between publisher and bookstore.
The New York Times recently featured an article about New Year's resolutions and willpower. The gist of the article was that most people start out with good intentions, but poor strategies, assuming that they'll somehow have the willpower to resist temptations. Yet studies have shown that willpower is depletable - you will very likely run out at some point, and you need to anticipate these limits. One of their recommendations was to enlist outside help and outsource self-control. Read the article for more suggestions, but here's a couple ideas to fuel your writing willpower year-round.
Choose a writing partner and agree on a weekly writing goal, such as 5 pages, or 5000 words, whatever works for you. At the end of every week, you will email your pages to that partner. She's not going to read it. She's simply going to confirm that you completed your goal, and give you a virtual pat on the back. Of course, you might want her to read and critique it, but the point is to just get it done and be held accountable by a friend who understands. Take it a step further and reward yourselves for completing these goals after a month, or 3 months - meet for coffee (or wine!) or a movie.
Another idea was suggested by Darcy Pattison. (If you've never attended one of Darcy's workshops, you need to check out her website now! She discovered 750 Words.com. Inspired by the idea of morning pages in The Artist's Way, 750 Words encourages you to write 3 pages every day. It's online, private, keeps track of your word count, and you earn points for completion. Check it out for yourself here.
Best of luck on your 2012 writing goals!