A recurring question of new authors is how much time does a good writer spend writing? The answer will vary depending on who you ask.
One thing I have noticed is that the purpose of the writing frequently makes a difference. With authors who focus their business around their writing, there seems to be an emphasis on writing consistently.
James Patterson is one who writes 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. And every book is extensively outlined before he starts writing. He usually has multiple projects in process at the same time. If he gets stuck on one he shifts to another.
Stephen King is another author who writes for several hours every day. He strongly believes in setting writing goals, and recommends a minimum of a thousand words a day, six days a week.
Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild, sees writing differently. Much of her writing she does in a style she refers to as “binge writing” when she goes off on her own and will write for several long days straight. She also does essay writing for a column she writes on a more regular basis.
If it is your goal to become a novelist like James Patterson or Stephen King, then writing will be the primary task of your job and you will want to build in regular writing time every day.
If your goal is to write a memoir about a part of your life, you may write as Cheryl Strayed did – going off and writing non-stop for a few days, returning to your life, then doing some serious writing again.
If motivational speaking or coaching is the primary focus of your business, then you will more likely be writing a book to sell at the back of the room or as a booster of your expertise and reputation. You will build regular writing time into your life until your book is completed. Then you may not write another book for months or years.
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