Seasons’ greetings, fellow writers. It’s that time of year where the eggnog starts pouring and the coloured lights are a twinklin’.
The busyness of the last few weeks of the year can leave very little time for writing, but it bears saying: write anyways. Whether it’s just 15 minutes, 500 words, whatever your method for squeezing in some writing time, do it.
While the expertise of Father Christmas lies in the industry of distribution and holiday cheer, there are a few things we can learn from his gift giving strategy when it comes to the picking up that pen, or committing to some keyboard clatter:
1. Not everyone will believe in you.
Let’s rip this bandage off quickly. There are probably people in your life who don’t believe you are a writer, or don’t believe that the effort in pursuing the craft is worth your time. These people might be bitter and malicious or they might be very well meaning.
You are still a writer.
Don’t waste time feeling like you have to convince them otherwise. Just because they aren’t putting out the writer’s equivalent of milk and cookies for you, doesn’t mean you don’t have a sack full of plot lines and protagonists in your sleigh– which brings us to our second tip:
Don’t be an aspiring writer. Be a writer. Write often, write purposefully, and write until you’ve finished something. That big velvet bag full of description and literary devices that you’ve been telling people about? You need wrap them up nicely so people can open up their browser,fire up their tablet, or crack open those pages and read them.
3. Santa has a workshop.
Good ol’ St Nick has his work space well established, and while you don’t necessarily need an area the size of the north pole for writing, you do need a designated writing zone. Someplace to sit, or stand, something to support your writing devices (a computer, paper pad and or pen), and somewhere you can focus with relatively few distractions.
4. Practice and Perfect.
I don’t mean “practice makes perfect”. Santa has been doing this a long time, and we’ve heard enough wacky tales about his misadventures delivering goodies to know that he still hasn’t got it completely right. But Santa sticks to it, even after the set backs.
Santa also evolves. He’s tried new things for better results, and you can too! Just think: what if one foggy Christmas eve, Santa didn’t add another reindeer to his team?
5. Santa knows what’s up… and so should you.
Santa does his research. He knows what his audience is looking for, though his means of acquiring such data is potentially questionable (He sees you when you’re sleeping, he knows when you’re awake…?). Do you know who your audience is? Do you know what they want to read about, or how to present it to them?
So here it is: Santa doesn’t execute his one night flight of gift giving with out a little bit of planning. He makes a list, and he checks it twice, so review this list: do you follow his advice?