ASK EM — The Writer Factory

Keyboard with Tips and Tricks Button.


Question: How do you write so much and not get burned out.


Short Answer: I do.


Writing is my day job. Yes, I have a marketing job and I sometimes edit for friends. But basically I’m writing for pay. Every single word I put on the screen is equivalent to jackhammering sidewalks, doing accounting work, standing in front of a class and teaching. Sure, my kids say I’m just typing, but all writers will agree that you suffer from more than aching hips and carpal tunnel when you write for a living.


Most of the time my deadlines aren’t very tight. I am able to write at my leisure, and that keeps my mind happy and full of ideas. But when I start HAVING TO write, that’s when things get messy.


At first everything seems okay on the surface. I’m hitting my word count goals and my characters are playing nice. But then something SNAPS and oh shhhhit. I’m in trouble!


Basically it comes down to this: Your mind can’t operate if it runs out of gas.


Some ways to fill up:


drink wine, beer or whiskey

do not open your laptop

do not look at your phone

stay off FB

ignore emails

lie in the grass and cloud watch

sit around a campfire with friends

drink more beer/wine/whiskey

go skinnydipping

tour a museum

listen to an audiobook


shoot hoops


walk the dog

go shoe shopping

learn something new


browse Pinterest

start a movie marathon

hit the beach


Do you see a trend in the above suggestions? None of those things are work. If you are feeling the effects of burnout, the prescription is LIFE. Go live it for a while. The burnout will go away and suddenly those words will fill your brain until you feel the need to write again.


As soon as I’m finished with my major projects, I’m taking a short hiatus. Yes, I’ll be working on small projects and I might even write a short story just for giggles. But I will not be facing the screen with the goal of pounding out 7000 words per day in June. I’m going to balance my work with real LIFE and enjoy summer with my chillens.


Remember, taking a few days off isn’t always enough, especially if you’ve worked long hours in that factory for many, many weeks/months/years.


Go live and see if that helps.




2 comments on “ASK EM — The Writer Factory

  1. Thank you. I think I needed that today.

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