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How do I get motivated to finish a book I've been writing for a long time now? I read this article and liked #1 and 2 but I have no idea how to make it fun or how to enjoy it. I can find the good reasons but do you have any ideas as to how I could make it fun?

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4 Answers

The article also claims in #2 that not everything can be fun, but I'm sure that there are ways: read the text aloud with a goofy accent, get a really cool pen for your edits, etc.

But to the other side, envision the finished book. Jack LaLanne once said that he hated exercise, but he did it because he loved the results.

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Try envisioning the end result. Not only do I mean the finished book but everything around. The excitement of the first sale, the first dollar bills in your hand, the good reviews. Go as far as you like, feel it and love it.

Now don't you want to finish the book and reach that success, whether it is fun or not?

This is something I usually do when a task is bothering me.

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The key to solving problems like this is often being specific. What exactly is the problem with finishing the book: Do you have no idea what to write? Or you do have an idea, but now it sounds wrong? Or you do have an idea, and it looks OK, but you feel too tired to continue writing for yet another month? Different answers will lead to different strategies.

For example if you know what to write, but you just don't enjoy writing anymore, try this: Give yourself a time limit of 20 minutes where you will write as fast as you can, without any editing, and after the 20 minutes stop writing, give yourself 10 minutes to edit what you wrote, measure the number of words written, write it down, and do the same thing next day. Try to beat your previous record. And always remind yourself that it's only 20 minutes. (I don't know how much text you need to write; maybe 50 minutes is more appropriate for given situation than 20. Find what works for you.)

This technique focuses your attention on speed on writing, as opposed to content; so it will be a change from what you did before, and new things are usually more interesting. Also it uses "reverse psychology": instead of pushing yourself to write more, you prevent yourself from writing after the deadline, which can make some bad feelings of pressure disappear.

On the other hand, if the problem is that you wrote a lot of text and now you don't know how to finish it... then do something else. Stop writing for two weeks, and promise yourself that during those two weeks you will not read or write the text. Just relax and sometimes think about it. During those two weeks you should get some ideas, but you are not allowed to work on them yet ("reverse psychology" again). Later you can decided on proper ending, and write it.

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Love these! I'll try them out immediately :) –  w00t Sep 18 '12 at 20:33
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well i read or heard somewhere at TED conference maybe, a writer having a cancer (God Forbid that) wrote 7 books in a year because he wants to leave his wife to get the royalties when he is dead. i really want to emphasize here on very strong feeling which enable him to complete his books. so you have to find that

maybe you can link your feeling to give happiness to some one you really love. you can envision there happiness in your mind 2 times a day to insert it in your subconscious and that may be become your turning point.

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