Agenda Free Friday

Friday Mornings on the Write Now blog are going to turn into agenda-free days. Very rarely will there be any specific topic unless, well, unless there is.

First off, what is Write Now? Write Now the assertive push we all need to get off our ass and write. Do it now. I’ll be making a clearer definition as we move forward, but plan on freelance advice, freelance tips, behind the scenes action, and — for the hell of it — recommendations on books and beer and anything else.

A couple book recommendations:

  • For the whiskey fans, check out Aaron Goldfarb’s “Hacking Whiskey.” Not only does Aaron know what the hell he’s talking about with regard to whiskey, but he’s a hell of a writer and a really good dude.
  • For fans of great stories of redemption, read Scott Harrison’s “Thirst” and then take a look at Charity:Water.

***

I was having a conversation with a friend not too long ago and he asked me a bit about how writing was going. This is usually an easy answer. “Good,” I say. “The key is just always moving onto the next thing, always have something lined up.” And that’s typically true … until it’s not. What happens if you run out of ideas? Or what happens when you’ve got everything you’ve written published, but nothing coming up? As was the case in the past couple of weeks.

At that point, it’s easy to get tied down around the house. There’s always vacuuming or cleaning to be done. There’s always the allure of the couch (though that’s a pressure I’ve been successful in avoiding). There’s always an errand that could be done before the errand sprint of the weekend. Of course, it’s always easy to find something to do on the internet even if it’s just mindless clicking.

That being said, my advice is to always keep writing. Find something to write about. It seems odious, for sure. Why am I typing 1,000 words on why I need a new headlamp for the camping season? Why am I hammering away at a keyboard right now? Where is this rambling going? But from those things — and I truly believe this — come ideas. Whether or not they pay off immediately, in the future, or never, they’re worth doing. I promise you.

***

A beer recommendation: One of the best beers I’ve had recently came as a surprise. It didn’t come as a surprise because the brewery isn’t very good. Actually the brewery is excellent. It’s just harder to get excited about a Pale Ale recently. But Revolution (Chicago, IL) does a Pale Ale called Fist City which is such a gut-punching good beer. It’s got that hop-bitterness that’s lacking in so many new age hoppy beers. It’s well-rounded, great malt backbone. It was a perfect beer to accompany my visit to the Chicago Public House.

***

One last piece of freelance writing advice: Take an hour of each day. Just one hour. Maybe it’s less some days and more other days. But take an hour to develop a bigger project. Something creative. A book. A slideshow. A painting. A blog. A collection of essays. This is something to keep you occupied in downtime when there are no stories to tell. No pitches to work on. Those days when you’re just waiting for the chime of an e-mail or for inspiration to hit. Find a project you can always return to. Not only is it good for the soul and for the morale, but, who knows, maybe you have something that can sell somewhere inside of you.

So, tell me Write Now fans … What’s on your mind?

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