Should You Blog Around The Holidays?

Should You Blog Around the Holidays? via KLWightman.com
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With Labor Day meaning an extra day off for us nine-to-fivers, a tempting thought came across my mind: I should skip blogging this week.

But my conscience soon kicked in. “Don’t let your readers down. They’re counting on a post from you come Tuesday.”

Then I had an epiphany. Do my readers (that’s you!) count on a blog post from me around the holidays?

So I came up with a balanced compromise: I’ll write a blog post about this.

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Why It’s Hard to Write in Winter

For many writers, it's hard to write in winter. Here's why.
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For many writers, it's hard to write in winter. Here's why.

Every winter, the story is the same. After the first snowstorm, everything I once loved comes to a quick halt. I drag through the workday. I dread running and exercising. I oversleep on weekends—and sometimes through the workday alarm.

All I want to do is eat my feelings.

My writing also takes a backseat. Even though NaNoWriMo ended a few weeks ago, all my inspiration from November evaporates in the autumn breeze. I suffer from serious writer’s block—or sometimes from serious writer’s crisis—and I beat myself up for not writing anything all week.

If this also sounds like you, then it could be a sign that you’re suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). It affects your mood, overall health and even your writing. That’s because SAD impacts how you feel about activities you once loved.

Why Winter is So Hard on Writers

As writers, we are already hypersensitive about what happens around us. We’re drawn to noticing details in nature, from our surroundings to the people that surround us.

We also are very reflective on what we experience. It’s this dwelling that leads us to feeling sad and unmotivated on grey, snowy days. It’s hard to be creative when the world around us looks so dreary. After we notice green trees and bright sunlight missing from our surroundings, we then start to notice what else is missing from our lives.

And that leads to noticing what’s missing from our writing. The words stop flowing, the ideas aren’t as keen, the drafts look sloppier. It’s like our minds are always elsewhere and our inner critic is working overtime.

How to Fight the Winter Blues

There is a way out of this. It will take some effort on your part to unglue yourself from your TV shows or to stop staring longingly out the window. But finding a new way to channel your writing can jumpstart your creativity and inspire you to write again.

  1. Journal about it. Grab a notebook and pen in your writing exercise. Explore your feelings through words. What do you feel? When do you feel it? How do you feel it? Why do you feel it? Get your feelings down on the page so that you can heal through your words. Having a safe place to voice how you feel can renew your excitement to write again.
  1. Write something else. Step away from your writing project and focus on challenging your creativity instead. Take a stab at writing prompts for 500 words or so. Journal about what happened today. Take a short story and try to write it from another character’s point of view.

How do I cope? I am a professional writer by day, so my 9-to-5 setup pushes me to write each day. My writing job gets me excited to write and I like how I have the opportunity to write something outside of my writing project. I try to take on more challenging writing assignments during this time to challenge my creativity and research skills.

How do you stay motivated to write during the winter? Share your advice below.

What Writers Really Want For Christmas

Giving a gift to a writer is easier than you think
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It’s hard to please a writer, especially during gift-giving holidays. Writers have hard-to-match taste in literature and win any witty holiday card competition. It’s a challenge to chisel through that introspective exterior and get an answer on what to buy them for Christmas.

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The answer isn’t deeply hidden. In fact, what writers really want for Christmas often can’t be wrapped and tucked underneath the Christmas tree. Because what writers really want for Christmas can be found on the pages of our favorite holiday stories.

Enough Writing Materials

A stack of notebooks, boxes of pens, or a printer stuffed with enough paper and ink can make a difference between a focused writer and a procrastinating one. Writers already have enough excuses to put off writing that chapter, so a stressful lack of supplies shouldn’t be one of them.

A Support System

It’s not easy telling people that you want to be a writer. In a world where everyone says they want to publish a book, it’s hard for someone to take a writer seriously. Genuine support from family and friends keeps a writer positive and motivated to stick to their writing project.

Ask about their writing projects. Don’t make faces when they talk about writing. Be understanding if they need time alone to write.

Your Stories

Let’s be honest: many of the best stories are stolen.  So let your writer be a thief! Sit down by the fireplace with a mug of hot chocolate and tell them your stories. You’ll have the writer’s full attention and eagerness to weave your tale into their next project.

Great Memories

Writers also enjoy writing about their life experiences too. So make some memories! Plan some fun activities out in the snow and inside where it’s warm. Stick to your holiday traditions—or add a twist to this year’s festivities. Be yourself and show off your personality when they’re around. Writers take note of every moment, be it large or small.

Because what writers really want for Christmas is you.