Five tips for finally finishing writing your book

Plenty of people start writing books, but the real challenge is pushing through to actually finish the project, even if that means simply getting to the end of the first draft.

Whatever your aims, it can be tricky to stay motivated, so here are some handy tips that should chase away writer’s block and put you on the path to completion.

1) Hire a writing coach

This might seem like an intensive option, but sometimes getting an expert involved is the only way to pull you out of a creative funk and push you towards the finish line.

Think carefully about how to choose a non-fiction writing coach, focusing on specialists with whom you have an instant connection and a shared set of interests. If your book is fictional, selecting a coach that has experience in the particular genre you are working within can be helpful.

2) Eliminate distractions

Procrastination is poison to most book projects, yet the modern world offers us so many distractions that it is difficult not to give into temptation.

Because of this, when you set aside time to write, try to minimize the likelihood that something will drag your attention away from the task at hand. Leave your phone in a different room, disconnect your Wi-Fi or unplug your router altogether and cut off your ability to go online whatsoever, until you have made some progress, at which point rejoining the digital world will feel like a real reward.

3) Set achievable daily goals and stick to them

The prospect of finishing a book can be so intimidating that it prevents you from generating enough momentum to put pen to paper or fingertip to keyboard. As such it is better to avoid thinking of this overarching goal, and instead put all your efforts into hitting smaller milestones with your writing every day.

Deciding to write 500, 1000 or 2000 words each day, no matter how good or bad they are, is better than doing nothing. Over time you will build up a generous catalogue of text, all without feeling like it is an uphill battle.

4) Plan properly

Planning out the content of your book is generally seen as a good idea, even if not all authors do this before they get started.

When we talk about proper planning, it is important not to think of the framework you set out as somehow inflexible, because this can cause consternation. Instead it should be perceived as a tool to help you make progress, while still being malleable enough to allow you to make changes as necessary, and find your way back to the right route if you wander off down a creative dead end.

5) Follow your instincts

You can tie yourself in knots if you are constantly trying to write what you think will please others, rather than just what pleases you.

Writing a book will be far more pleasurable if you are writing for an audience of one; yourself. Hopefully the end result will connect with others like you.