• Zoe

Every Writer's Biggest Problem with David Ward

Updated: May 7, 2020

You have the playlist, the pens, and the picture window. Yet every time you sit down and write, something goes awry. Your stream of consciousness doesn't make any sense, no one can pronounce your protagonist's name, and your computer is making you type only in Comic Sans. 😤

(Everyone who loves Comic Sans, I apologize. I went to elementary school too recently for the horrors to fade.)

Every aspiring or published author has experienced a few despicable writing conditions. Things like as wasting time clearing out your spam folder, attempting to find synonyms, and other ahh! stichiations. Today, I've decided to compile six of these incidents that will send a shiver down your literary spine. Go ahead and feel all the feels!

Despite providing a safe place for you to share all of your scribber tragedies, I've also decided to include some advice from a published author that will actually help you fix your problems.

David B. Ward, a professor with a PhD in Practical Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, has also written a book called Practicing the Preaching Life, about how to produce content every week and still live a beautiful life. Preaching may not be your thing, but writing every week is (or could be).

#1: Realizing you've spent the last 30 minutes playing around with fonts

Cursive fonts, swirly letters, block and bold type . . . finding a new font is a special kind of adrenaline for writers! It's so easy for me to putter around before I write, finding a playlist or testing different chairs, and ending up wasting all my time.

The fix:

Zoe: How do you avoid wasting time while writing? What’s your biggest distraction(s)?

David: "I like to find a place to write where no one will talk to me, but everything I need is nearby. Usually that means, coffee, snacks, and more coffee. I often try to focus on my “hot time” which is based on biorhythm. For me the time between 5:30am and 10am is the most productive time of the day. If I can get all of that time, without interruptions I will write more than I would write the rest of the day combined. My biggest distraction is cheap writing. It is easy to knock out some simple and easily finished projects all day long. I usually have multiple writing irons in the fire. If I let myself just do the small things, I’ll never add up enough daily work to achieve the big thing. I know that sounds like a cop out to some. But it is the truth. I am a pretty focused person when I am in the best time of the day."