One of the questions I’m most often asked is how I find the discipline to write. Well, the answer is simple. Writing is my job, and, like any job, I have to get up every day, sit down and get on with it. Sure, sometimes it’s hard. Sometimes I feel like doing just about anything if it means getting away from my desk. But if I worked in an office, say, I couldn’t just not turn up one morning because I’d decided I’d really rather stay in bed and watch re-runs of Frasier. I’m a firm believer that if you sit down with your book for long enough, the words will come. They might not be the right words first time, but they’ll move your story forward and keep your plot turning over.
When you’re on a roll, everything is brilliant. When you’re feeling creatively sapped, it’s an effort. And if you don’t have a book contract in place, that’s the hardest bit. Will it be worth it? Will anyone read it? Is it any good? These are questions the vast majority of unpublished writers, including me, have asked ourselves. Discipline, then, becomes something different. It comes from deep inside. You have to believe, in your core, that you’re going to finish this book. You’re not going to do it for anyone else except you – because you want a completed novel and you can’t let your characters float in uncertainty for the rest of time. The publishing contract is the golden prize but it’s not a given. Discipline stems from your own personal desire to write.by