Monday, April 25, 2011

The Reading Problem

You've all heard it before.
If you don't have time to read, you don't have time to write.
To be a better writer, you have to be a better reader.
All writers were readers first.
Writers *must* read, read, READ!
Ok! Shut up already. I get it.
But what happens when you give in to the advice (or compulsion) to read when you should be writing?
I'll tell you what happens.
You pick up a book.
You read.
You like the book.
You discover, thanks to the handy e-reader, that the author has four more books in the series.
"Oh," you say."I must look at those too."
And you do.
And you like them.
And then, the inevitable conclusion, you read them.
You might hear a tiny, meek voice inside your head at this point.
It's soft and barely discernible.
But it's there.
And it says, "Shouldn't you be writing?"
Well, maybe you will, but you just want to finish the chapter you're reading.
(1-2 hours and several chapters later)
"I'll just finish this book and then I'll sit down with my WIP and really get some work done."
(3-4 hours later, part way through the next book)
"What time is it? Darn. I read all the way through my scheduled writing time. Oh well. I'll just work on it tomorrow."
Hey, guess what?
That author also has another trilogy and I've heard it's REALLY good.
The point?
Stop reading!
I don't mean all together, just put the delicious book down for now.
I know, I know. It's really good and I'm sure that author is your favorite and she's amazing and her characters are so awesome and she is a master pacer and she--
Here's the deal.
If you get 500 wotp (in MoMo vernacular that's "words on the page") you can read another chapter.
If you get 1000 wotp, you can read five more chapters.
See how it works?
Then the reading becomes a reward.
Like a cookie when you're mired in yet another diet.
The writing is your diet, the reading is a triple chocolate chip mocha fudge cookie the size of your head.
Now, place the book gently on the shelf, tell it you will see it again soon, and GET TO WORK!
And if you say, "Let me finish this chapter first," I will reach through this screen and snatch the book out of your hand and bash you on the head with it.
All my love,

Monday, April 18, 2011

It’s Monday. And the only thing you want to do is crawl back in bed and sleep the morning away.

But the kids are hungry. The dog needs let outside.

Oh, yeah, and you have work to do.

For writers in any stage of their career, getting words on the page can be a difficult thing. There is no one looking over your shoulder, with pompoms in hand, screaming your name. No one threatening to fire you for not making our quota.

Most of us have other jobs – you know, because you need money to live. Others are solely committed to writing, maybe because they already have been published, or maybe because they’re just lucky. Or living in their car and eating out of dumpsters.

No matter where you’re at in your writing career, let’s face it. We all need a push. Or shove. Or a stiletto in the back side.

This is why we bring Motivational Monday to you.

Trust us; this isn’t for the faint of heart. We are ruthless, humiliating and downright evil.

The two of us – Vivien Easton and Kimberly Meyer – are here to help you as you wind your way down the steep, rocky, mountainside path to completing a novel.

We’ve set up this blog to help you through the tough times. To bring fellow authors together. To motivate you.

Don't expect flowery words of encouragement here or understanding when you don't live up to your potential.

You may find yourself wearing a prom dress to the grocery, walking through the mall with a piece of toilet paper stuck to the bottom of your shoe, or going on a dinner date with your pants on backwards.

Is that motivation or what?

So what do you have to do?

On the first Monday of each month, we will post a highly effective motivation in the form of public humiliation (like the above mentioned scenarios) on our blog. Your job is to set a goal each and every Monday morning and stick to it. It can be a daily, weekly, or monthly goal. You can set it by word count, chapter, or scene.

Post your goal to the comments section of the blog. Make it reasonable, and be honest with yourself. If you don’t make your goal, you must carry out the punishment assigned at the beginning of the month.

Our first post will be Monday, May 2nd and we look forward to seeing your goals.

And please, spread the word! We want to torture help as many people as we can. We assure you, you will never look at Monday the same way.

We’re on twitter: @momowrite