100 Days to Write a Novel Week Nine

Having not really written for two weeks I am behind. I should be on 45,000 words, but I’m on just less than 35,000. I’ve done half a novel but have used up over half the time.

Lots of things can stop you writing I’ve found. In the War of Art Steven Pressfield talks about “resistance” and gets all spiritual – According to Pressfield, Resistance is a malignant presence that exists to block you. It rises up against you to stop you from doing what you most need to do: “The more important a call or action is to our soul’s evolution, the more Resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.”

but I think that’s mostly bollocks – writing a novel isn’t “soul evolution” – I mean you might learn things about yourself and the world writing a novel but it’s not some Buddhist practise towards enlightenment (YMMV).

Bruce Holland Rogers in Word Work talks about procrastination as armour – it serves a purpose (otherwise we wouldn’t do it), it protects us, and he identifies different styles of procrastination – like the perfectionist’s need to get everything right before moving on or the hedonist’s need to put off unpleasant tasks in favour of comfort and pleasure etc.

Of those I feel I am more the second than the first. I come home tired from work, didn’t write much that night. I go on holiday and take the journal and a tablet but don’t open either etc.


Why do it now when you can put it off till later?

I need to avoid the ‘do it right before deadline’ in order to avoid the ‘never do it’.

I am on day 61, 39 days/5 weeks to write 35,000 words? starting to look like I need to hit 7,000 words a week from now on… tune in next week to see how that goes!


Published by suttope

Pete W Sutton is a writer and editor. His two short story collections – A Tiding of Magpies and The Museum for Forgetting – were shortlisted for Best Collection in the British Fantasy Awards in 2017 & 2022 respectively. His novel – Seven Deadly Swords – was published by Grimbold Books. He has edited several short story anthologies and is the editor for the British Fantasy Society Horizons fiction magazine.

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