Wednesday, August 15, 2018

0 WoW Wednesdays: Monica Sanz on why you don't need to write everyday

Today, we're so excited to welcome the amazing Monica Sanz, a member of the Wattpad4 and a Wattpad contributor whose work has over six million views. She's here to talk about writing advice - more specifically that bit of advice we're all heard. You must write every day. In the guest post below, Monica discusses why that advice might not work for you and why that's okay. Stay tuned for info about Monica's book SEVENTH BORN, coming September 4th from Entangled Teen. But now, here's Monica:

By Monica Sanz
As writers, we’re always looking for ways to improve our craft or techniques that will help us be more effective and successful. When I was starting out, I scoured the internet for tips on how to become a better writer, and when I discovered Twitter, I thought I’d stumbled upon a well of wisdom. That’s true, to a degree; you can make meaningful connections and learn a lot about the industry on Twitter and online. One thing I wish I would have kept in mind though was that a lot of the advice given were merely opinions and not things I had to accept as law in order to be a writer. One nugget of advice that fits into this category is the a writer must write every day tip that is constantly repeated by well-meaning folks. I’ve offered up the same advice in the past, but, well, we all learn from our mistakes.

I was in this write every daycamp for a long time. I wrote whenever I had the chance, on whatever I could get my hands on—my phone, tablet, a notebook I carry around, napkins—whatever. But then a few months ago, I went through the hardest time if my life. The "I would never wish this upon my worst enemy" type of painful experience. And as I sat there in the hospital with a million and one worries and my heart in a thousand pieces, there was this unnecessary added worry in the back of my mind… I was worried about not being able to write. Not because I wanted to, but because it was something I had to do. And as the days went by, that worry grew until I tried to push through my pain and get something down on paper.

But then something clicked. Why did I HAVE to write?

Why couldn’t I take this time to grieve? Where were my words going to go if I didn’t write them then and there? And if they did leave, wouldn’t more words come anyway? I’m a writer after all. Words are what fill my brain day and night, so where was this concern coming from? I realized then I had taken this piece of advice and made it law. I had fooled myself into thinking that I was a real writer because I wrote every single day, and if I didn’t keep it up, then I’d lose my seat at the writer’s table or get my writer’s card revoked. It was a jarring and dispiriting thought, because it wasn't that I wanted to write as some kind of outlet for what I was going through, but because I felt like a failure if I didn't.

There are so many of us with that belief hanging over us and it’s not true. I closed my computer that day and didn’t write anything new for two months. I had edits to wrap up, yeah, but new material? No way. I wasn’t ready and that was okay for me, and it’s okay for you too. I didn’t write for that time and here I am, still a writer, working on the second book of my new series, and countless new ideas brewing in the back of my head. My talent is still here. The ideas are still here. The words are still here. Words will always be here because the frequency with which we write is not what makes us writers. It’s our passion to put these words down on paper and give these stories life.

If you need to take a break, do it. If you want to chill and watch TV, read a book, or play with your babies (fur babies included), do it. I learned those months ago that life is way too short to bog ourselves down with unnecessary rules, especially those that suck the joy out of what we love doing.

We're human, living in a world full of unknowns and surprises. Things shift and spill and explode and we may not want to write because we’re hurt, fatigued, or simply don't want to, and if you feel better with another writer saying it's okay to be a writer and not write, then here I am, a writer, telling you, a writer: it’s okay.

Monica Sanz is a YA author who writes about brooding professors, cursed ringmasters, tortured soul collectors, and the girls they fall in love with. She has an established fan base on the social writing website, Wattpad where her works have over 6 million combined reads. She is a member of the Wattpad4, a group of writers who host weekly Twitter chats on the subjects of writing and publishing.

When not lost in one of her many made-up worlds, Monica can be found on the sunny beaches of South Florida where she resides with her husband and their three children or scouring YouTube for new bands to feed her music addiction.

ABOUT SEVENTH BORN (9/4/18; Entangled Teen)
Abomination. Curse. Murderer. All names hurled at eighteen-year-old Seraphina Dovetail. As the seventh-born daughter to a witch, she's the cause of her mother losing her powers and, in turn, her life.

Abandoned as a child, Sera dreams of becoming an inspector and finding her family. To do that, she must be referred into the Advanced Studies Program at the Aetherium's Witchling Academy. Her birth order, quick temper, and tendency to set things on fire, however, have left her an outcast with failing marks…and just what Professor Nikolai Barrington is looking for.

The tall, brooding, yet exceedingly handsome young professor makes her a proposition: become his assistant and he'll give her the referral she needs. Sera is quickly thrust into a world where witches are being kidnapped, bodies are raised from the dead, and someone is burning seventhborns alive. As Sera and Barrington grow ever closer, she'll discover that some secrets are best left buried…and fire isn't the only thing that makes a witch burn.

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