Author Guest Post
Writing a Book One Sentence a Day
I am often asked about my writing routine, or how I motivate myself to write each day. Back when I was on staff at a magazine, my motivation was simple: I had a deadline to meet and if I didn’t meet it I might lose my job. As a self-published author, the motivation has to come from somewhere else, from goals I set for myself that I know I can keep. And that is a lot harder to accomplish.
For a while, I tried the word-count schedule. I created a calendar and decided upon a set amount of words I would need to complete each week in order to get my novel done in a reasonable amount of time. Problem was, any week I was off by a few words (or more likely, a few thousand), I would have to up the amount of words for the following week or, better, up the weekly word count to make up for what I didn’t accomplish. It had a sort of snowball effect, with the word count steadily rising each week as I procrastinated.
Clearly, I needed a new system.
I found my inspiration from the world of fitness, of all places. I heard a trainer being interviewed, and she said that she tells those starting out to make a small daily promise to themselves that they know they can accomplish, like doing five pushups each day. After all, no matter how busy you are, you can probably find a spare minute to drop to the floor and complete five pushups (or, in my case, five “girl” pushups). The idea is that you will get your heart rate going and maybe do 20 additional pushups, or add in a few more exercises.
A light went off, and I thought I could apply that same principle to my writing. What if I set a goal that I knew could accomplish, no matter how busy I was or how much of a writer’s block I was facing? What if I said that no matter what, I was going to write one sentence a day, even if it was complete gibberish? Hence, the one-sentence-a-day goal was set.
It was easy! And guess what: Once I sat down to write one sentence, 90 percent of the time I wrote a lot more than that. But it was the one-sentence goal that got me to the computer. I knew in my mind that all I had to do to meet my goal was type out 25 or so words. That was all it took to get me from saying, “Nope, can’t write today, I have too much [insert needless errands here] to do,” to instead saying, “I have a lot on my schedule, but I am going to get that one sentence done.”
With this system, I not only finished my book two months ahead of what I had planned, but I also got started on two additional books. After all, even though I had finished my book, I knew that I needed to keep up my goal of writing a sentence a day.
So if you are having trouble staying on track, or have a book or two you have started but given up on, here’s my challenge to you: Commit to writing one sentence a day. It might just be the motivation you need to finish the book you have inside you.
About The Author
After her twenty-year career in magazine publishing came to a screeching halt faster than you can say “print is dead,” Lori Stacy decided it was time to finally turn the many stories she had been crafting in her head over the years into books.
Lori has authored a number of fiction and nonfiction books for young adults, has written articles for both print and online publications, and has written about hotels for one of the world’s leading search engines.
She lives in Texas with her husband and three children. When she is not writing, you can usually find her in the kitchen baking treats (which she says are for her children) or trying to train their hundred-pound golden retriever, an obedience school dropout.
You can find out more about Lori and her latest books at www.loristacy.com, provided she didn’t forget to pay her web hosting bill.
Amazon Author Page
Big Hair & Buttermilk Pie by Lori Stacy
Book 1: Rose Cottage Cafe Mysteries Series
Publisher: Superlative Media
Publication Date: April 18, 2016
Format: eBook - 116 pages
Kindle - 849 KB
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Buy The Book:
Mandy Hemphill is living her dream, running the successful Rose Cottage Cafe in Orchardville, Texas, from the ground floor of a converted, old—and possibly haunted—downtown home. She even had plans to grow her business with a new outdoor patio…if only the mayor wouldn’t have turned her down.
So when the beloved mayor is found murdered, Mandy finds herself among the suspects. And now business at the cafe is dropping faster than a fallen soufflé. How can she prove her innocence and save the Rose Cottage Cafe?
Thankfully Ben, the new owner of The Orchardville Gazette, doesn’t believe she’s guilty. As the two of them set out to find the real killer, they uncover one small-town lie after the next. But the closer they get to learning the truth about who killed the mayor, the more in danger they find themselves.
My Book Review:
Big Hair & Buttermilk Pie, is the first book in the Rose Cottage Cafe Mysteries Series. This is a delightful cozy mystery that follows the amateur murder investigative adventure of Rose Cottage Cafe owner Mandy Hemphill and The Orchardville Gazette owner Ben Hathaway.
Author Lori Stacy weaves an entertaining cozy mystery debut set in Orchardville, Texas, that follows cafe owner Mandy Hemphill as she tries to clear her name and save her business, after being put on a suspect list when Mayor Willie Walters was found murdered.
Mandy is the owner of the successful Rose Cottage Cafe, but after her permit request to build a patio was rejected by Mayor Walters, and she bad-mouthed him to anyone who would listen, she now finds herself a possible suspect in the murder investigation. Worried about proving her innocence and saving her cafe, Mandy enlists the help of Ben Hathaway, co-tennant and new owner of The Orchardville Gazette, to assist her in looking for clues that will solve the murder.
Big Hair & Buttermilk Pie is a fun and easy to read cozy mystery. It has a good mixture of humor, mystery, and a touch of romance that will easily keep the reader engaged as they follow Mandy and Ben's amateur investigative adventure. There are enough suspects and intriguing twists and turns that will keep the readers on their toes and guessing the identity of the real killer. I really enjoyed the sassy banter and subtle hint of a romance brewing between Mandy and Ben, and the mystery surrounding a ghost named Wilcox who supposedly roams the Victorian house where the Rose Cottage Cafe is located, left me wanting to know when he would finally put in an appearance. I would be remiss if I didn't mention that the author teases the reader by interweaving tempting baked goods throughout the story that will leave them craving to taste some of the yummy goodness, and she even includes recipes for buttermilk pie and peach-pecan muffins! I look forward to reading the next installment in the Rose Cottage Cafe Mysteries Series.
RATING: 4 STARS
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