This post is part of the Blogging from A to Z challenge–blogging every day in the month of April (except Sundays!) with each letter of the alphabet.
It’s not a big secret, and yet sometimes it’s the hardest truth to swallow, but in order to be a writer you have to write. You have to write a lot. You have to produce a great amount of work–large portions of which will never see the light of day–if you want to get good at your craft. If you want to make a career out of writing, you need to write even more than that. Productivity is the key to being a successful writer, no matter what kind of writing you do.
But what is productivity? How much is enough, or how much will at least be enough to get you moving in the direction you want to go? The answer depends on the writer and how fast you want to get there. Everyone sets different standards for themselves. Some writers give themselves monthly, or weekly, or daily quotas. Some writers track their progress by words, some by pages, some by numbers of stories and books written. Personally, I go by word count and try to put in 2,000 words a day. Everyone has different goals for themselves–the important part is that you sit down and do it.
Productivity also covers things like editing and rewriting, marketing, research, outlining–any time devoted to the page and the end result moves you forward. Of course this doesn’t mean you should never take a break, or even a vacation. You don’t want creativity burnout, after all. The brain needs to recharge. But being successful in writing means putting the work in, just like any other job.
How about you, what are your personal standards for productivity? What goals do you try to reach?