Make Comics Serazard The City

How to Make Indie Comics: The Write Mindset


Tips on How to Force Yourself to Write!

As creators, we are often bursting with ideas that never come to fruition. Though we may jot down notes from time to time, starting to write a story can be a daunting task. I’ve written over 10 terrible feature-length scripts with perhaps over 50 unfinished projects in the past 13 years, and I’ve learned that there is no right or wrong way to begin writing, as long as you start and finish the first draft. When it comes to finishing stories, I use the following strategies to keep me motivated.


  1. Take it Easy. Starting a writing project can be daunting, especially if you’re new to it. One effective strategy is to begin with a manageable goal of dedicating one hour a week to writing. This way, you won’t feel overwhelmed or pressure yourself to produce a lot of content in a short amount of time. It’s also helpful to break up your writing sessions into smaller chunks throughout the day. Remember, writing should be enjoyable, particularly for non-professionals. By limiting your writing time, you can gradually build momentum and stay motivated. If you’re someone who tends to have multiple projects, try focusing on one project during each one-hour session. This will help you optimize your ideas and stay focused. Once you’ve completed your writing for the week, take a break and save your energy for the next session. It’s important to avoid burnout, so make sure to pace yourself and increase your writing sessions gradually when you feel ready.
  2. Mindset & Structure. Sometimes, it can be difficult to approach writing as a task rather than a passion project or art form. However, one helpful strategy is to view your story as a series of assignments that need to be completed. This can be achieved by breaking down your story into specific objectives and milestones. To do this, start by mapping out your story beat by beat, focusing on the major actions that drive the plot forward. Then, set realistic monthly goals for yourself, such as writing 1-2 scenes by the end of the month. By holding yourself accountable and tracking your progress, you’ll be able to keep your momentum going and stay on track. To reinforce this mindset, print out your project milestones and objectives and post them on your wall as a reminder. This way, you’ll be able to visually see your progress and stay motivated to achieve your goals. By approaching your story as a set of manageable tasks, you’ll be able to tackle it with confidence and see it through to completion.
  3. Prompts. To further motivate yourself to meet your writing deadlines, consider using writing prompts for each scene, chapter, or assignment of the month. These prompts can be based on something you find interesting or cool, and can help spark creativity and excitement for each task. For example, when writing “The City,” I created prompts for each chapter. In Chapter 1, the prompt was based on an angry cyclist getting shot in the head. In Chapter 2, it was a cliffhanger where the K points a gun at the police chief while refugees of the Ruins chant his name. In Chapter 3, the prompt involved Isis getting sliced in half by Grims. By focusing on these climactic moments, I was able to stay motivated and engaged in the writing process. If you find that there isn’t anything particularly exciting within a given assignment, consider creating your own prompts as long as they don’t create continuity issues. Giving yourself multiple prompts can also help increase your motivation and drive to complete each task. Seeing your prompts come to life as you finish each assignment can be a satisfying and rewarding experience, making it easier to meet your deadlines and push yourself to accomplish your writing goals.
  4. Deep focus. Deep focus writing is a technique that involves fully immersing yourself in your writing, with the goal of achieving a state of flow. This means eliminating distractions and dedicating a set amount of time to writing without interruption. So put your phone in another room, sip some caffeine, put on your headphones, and listen to some alpha waves to help you completely zone in. During this time, you should try to maintain a laser-like focus on your writing, allowing yourself to get lost in the creative process. This technique can be incredibly effective for writers who struggle with procrastination or distractions, as it provides a clear structure and goal for your writing sessions. With deep focus writing, you may find that you are able to produce higher quality work in a shorter amount of time, and that you feel more satisfied with your writing as a result.


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