5 tips for staying motivated to finish your romance novel

Writing a novel is a marathon task, and it can be tough to stay motivated at the best of times. So you may be finding it even more difficult to focus on writing at a time when you may have added stresses and responsibilities. But it’s never a bad time to follow your dreams and live out your passions – even if it’s for just a few minutes a day.

Here are 5 tips for keeping motivated to finish your romance novel:

1. Pitch yourself!  

#CarinaPitch is happening this Wednesday, May 13, 2020. How would you pitch your WIP to an editor?  Why not try pitching to yourself? Channel the enthusiasm you had when you got your initial inspiration by summing up your romance in a few words. Write down your pitch and post it where you can see it as you write.

2. Try a motivational or productivity app.

Usually we tell you to put away your phone to write, but some authors find motivational apps helpful. Maybe you already use an app to track your fitness goals and have seen how effective it can be for helping you maintain good fitness habits. Why not try something similar for your writing goals?

3. Set achievable goals and reward yourself when you achieve them.

It takes a lot of steps to write a book, and you should have a series of goals. Maybe one of your goals is submitting your finished work by a certain date. But maybe the first goal is just committing to write for thirty minutes today or to complete a certain number of pages. If you achieved that – hurray! Take a moment to celebrate your achievement, even if that just means checking in with your favourite authors on Twitter for ten minutes while you sip your coffee.

4. Habits can be helpful.

Try to keep a routine even when you’re not in the mood to write. Some days sitting down at your desk will feel like an impossible feat. But focusing on a task you love with all your attention can be energizing, and you might find that writing every day for a short time generates more ideas (and pages) than writing once a week for longer.

5. Join the Harlequin Writing Community.

There’s nothing like the encouragement of people who share your passion and understand your goals to build you up when you’re feeling down. A community reminds you that you’re engaged in a worthy endeavor, and you’re not alone.

Above all, respect your own journey. There’s no one pathway to writing. The pages you’ve deleted, the chapters you’ve scrapped, the plots you’ve abandoned, are as much a part of the process as the polished manuscript. Throw away the concept of “failure” and let mistakes and wrong turns strengthen your writing and your resilience.

Do you have any motivational strategies that work for you? Share in the comments!

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  1. Eliana Robinson

    To what point can a historical heroine be modern before she is considered contradictory to her time? I’d like to write this great idea for the Historical Blitz challenge however the entire concept has my heroine being rather modern in her character, choices and the entire core of the book is based on one very modern aspect that to change it changes the whole book, – how can I tell weather it will be in keeping to the likes of harlequin? Or am I wasting my time again? My tastes in the past have been deemed …well contradictory to harlequin’s likes. I still believe my novel is fresh and engaging but unsure if it fits to what is being looked for. I personally believe the core events in my story really did happen even back then but were simply hushed or kept unadvertised. Furthermore it correlates to the strong women of today – they didn’t just appear out of thin air, my heroine suggests a link to the strong women of the past I strongly believe did exist even then….What do I do?