“Reduce your plan to writing. The moment you complete this, you will have definitely given concrete form to the intangible desire.” –Napoleon Hill
That’s all you need to do.
Set aside time—be it each evening, each morning, each weekend, whatever— and write. It doesn’t matter how much you write, as long as you write. The mere act of writing regularly sharpens your mind and encourages ideas to flow. It gets you out of self-doubting mental ruts and onto the paper. It gets you engaged. It makes you think. And your story will grow.
Each word written, each sentence edited, each day you sit down to add to that WIP brings you a word, a line, a page closer to your goal. Write with abandon and write with your heart. Write! Write! Write! Editing can come later. If something’s poorly written you can fix it later. If you’re unsure about something you can change it later. Skip the scenes that are giving you trouble and write the words you know you can write now. You can form a beautiful tapestry if you just weave. Weave, work, and reweave. Line by line. Word by word.
Let me tell you a story, about my experiences with writing goals.
I used to not write very much. I would only write when I felt “called by the Muse”, which was, honestly, almost never. Hardly ever did words just flow brilliantly off my tongue, perfect, lyrical, and all-round wonderful from conception. And consequently, it took me forever to finish almost anything.
But I wanted to be a career novelist, and novels don’t write themselves, so I knew I would have to change something in the way I approached writing. I decided to set my goal as 1,000 words every day, no matter how inspired I felt. At first I didn’t like it. It was painful. Each night I thought the 1,000 words I’d just written were the crappiest ever. But when I’d look at the words the next morning…often I would think, “Hey, these aren’t so bad. I can keep most of them. I think I can even use this as the pivotal scene in the chapter. I’m glad I actually wrote these.”
The more I practiced writing like this the easier it became and the more I loved it. My mind loosened up. Words and ideas began to flow. Novels grew.
Write something everyday. It doesn’t have to be long. 500 words, 200 words, even 1 word. How much you write doesn’t matter. What matters is the act of writing, the act of sitting down and spilling words onto paper.
So write! That’s all you need to do.
Even if it’s just one line.