If you’re anything like me, you have one (okay, more than one), story sitting on your computer that you started and never finished. I’ve lost count how many I’ve had in that suspended state. Not all of them have gone on to be completed, but a lot have. I thought I’d share with you five tips that brought them back to life again.
Read and Revisit
This one is probably the easiest. In fact, so easy, you probably wouldn’t think it would work but it does. Pull the story up on the screen and read through what you’ve already written. When I revisit characters and plot it stirs up my imagination to get the plot rolling again.
Go to Online Book Stores
Sometimes it’s a creative kick up the butt you need. I’ve found looking at what’s being published helps me to get back into the story I’ve abandoned. Go searching for books that are in the genre you’re writing in and sometimes that gives you an incentive to finish what you started.
Set a Schedule
When I was a freelance writer, I always had a deadline looming so it gave me practice and discipline for my fiction work. Look at your calendar or planner and set a date for the completion of your first draft. If you need to, pretend that’s the day your editor or agent wants to read it.
Change Things Around
Maybe you were growing bored with the story and it needs new life. Try switching things around. For example, if you were writing in third person, change to first and vice versa. Even try writing in present tense.
Give Yourself Permission
Trying to be perfect can stall lots of projects. Give yourself permission to be awful. Relax, take the pressure off yourself, and remember this is a first draft that’s for your eyes only.