Not every sentence you write has to be for your next book. Most people think that a detour to write a blog post or even a social media post is a waste of time when they should be working on chapters. Not true. Those are the people who suffer most from writer’s block because they don’t give their brains a break.
I write a lot of non-fiction in my day to day life – marketing, emails, articles – and on top of editing one book and potentially preparing for the next one, I also write a lot for fun in the form of fanfiction and simple mini stories. Why would I want to waste my time on those things if I consider myself a professional author?
Because variety breeds creativity. If you’re having trouble writing a scene, don’t give up, but maybe take a break to write something else, get those creative juices flowing another way, then come back to that difficult scene with a fresh view and zest for the work.
I do this all the time. One of the reasons I love (and sometimes loathe) Tumblr is because I’m never short of writing prompts there, whether from scrolling content or from my followers leaving them in my ‘ask’ box. I don’t HAVE to take on any of these ‘asks’ but I enjoy doing it from time to time when maybe I only have ten minutes to devote to writing, and if I don’t feel like I can be productive with my current novel, why not write a short story or piece of fanfiction that very well could turn into my next novel idea?
After all, my upcoming book release, Lovesick Gods (which I can share with you now will actually be part one to a two-book series, Lovesick, with the second book titled Lovesick Titans) started as a prompt from a reader, intended to be nothing more than fanfiction, and yet it grew a life of its own that translated into an original piece I am more proud of than anything I’ve ever done.
All because of a prompt others might have taken for silly or a time-waster. I spent six months on that fic, after all, totally devoted. Well, now I’m only a few months away from the start of my next book series. No amount of writing is a waste, not even a sentence.
One of my favorite randomly written sentences still haunts me from the start of this blog as another superhero novel idea I MUST finish someday.