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How To Become a Prolific Author

Updated on December 7, 2009

The basic thing is to say what you want, and to say it fast.  There are several people prepared to read what you write, especially if it is something of their interest. You need to understand something about the realities of people, and what they are interested in reading.  

If you want to produce a lot, you have to be interested in what people want from you, not exactly what you want from people. In other words, being a productive author is more related to what you can give people to what you can get from other people.  

If you need to do extensive research for each new book or article you write, then it is hard to be a product author, because you are going to spend most of your time doing research.  

There is nothing wrong doing some research, but a fast writer has to use this research really well in order to maintain their production levels. For example, each hour of research should be able to translate into several hours of literature. If you do less then this, then you are spending a lot of time in something that won't help you in being prolific.

What does it take to be a prolific writer?

Concentration: nobody can create a large body of literature in small scraps of time. If you want to write a book in a day, you need to sit and write the book without interruptions. Interruptions kill productivity as fast as you can turn back to your keyboard. If you are going to write, find a place where you can work several hours without being interrupted.  

Imagination: prolific writing in the act of letting your imagination guiding you. You shouldn't let your concerns to curtain the works of your mind, because training this link between imagination and writing is the whole idea of being a productive writer.  

Try to write as freely as possible. Understand that the quality of your writing will improve over time, as you write. It is the same as learning to speak: nobody spends a lot of time preparing everything that is said.  You learn to speak as you go -- the same process applies to writing.  

Don't stop: if you are in a good mood and work is flowing, don't stop because it can make your return to work more difficult. Continue in the process, until you have said at least everything that you had initially in mind. It is a great opportunity whenever you have something to say and the time to say it. Let this opportunity happen by continuing with your writing for as long as possible without interruptions. Don't worry, other things can wait until you finish your article or book.  

Find a comfortable place to work: one of the biggest tools of the prolific writer is a working place that allows for the activity. Great writers have a place where they have all their tools, so they don't need to move from one place to another. If you need coffee, let a bottle of coffee near your, so that you don't need to get up to take some more. If you have a good place where you can work without distractions, you are already in a good direction to start creating your new master piece.  

Don't worry if inspirations is difficult to find: at the beginning it is difficult to work the creative process because you keep looking for inspiration.  This is one of the major reasons why people don't write as much as they should.  To avoid this kind of problem, try to write anything about the topic you are interested in. It really doesn't matter the initial quality of what you are writing: as you progress you will improve the quality. Also, even poor quality writing can be used as raw material, and improved in a later time.  What is really important is to put into paper your thoughts, in some way.  

Maintain a routine of writing: it is very important to maintain a work rhythm, so that you don't need to restart the process from anew. You should maintain a certain time where you work for a specific number of hours, even if you don't want. By maintaining a schedule and sticking to it, you will keep the muscle that allow the production of more work each day. Once you are used to write anything during a period of time, you will also discover that the quality will improve, because everyone improves in the things that they are used to do. Just make sure that you have the habit of doing the same tasks everyday, and this will allow you to keep the constant practice that at the end leads to mastery.  

Don't judge your work: we are the biggest judges of our own work. And we are such powerful judges that we even keep new work from starting, just because we believe that it won't have the quality we want. Have you ever though like this? Well, every thinks a little bit like this, but to be a prolific writer you have to overcome this kind of blocking. It is a feeling that you try to stop you, because your inner judge only likes perfect work. The problem is, nobody is perfect, so if you listen to your judge, you will never finish any good work. Try to keep your inner judge in check by allowing yourself to write poor quality work. It is just fine, and it is a part of your training as a good writer. Don't let this kind of behavior stop you before you have become great.  

Strive to keep a writing target: it depends on your situation and your goals, but keeping a target can help your be more productive. For example, you can have a target of writing 1000 words per day. If you do this, you will have an expectation that needs to be fulfilled by your subconscious mind. You can increase this goal as you go, and eventually you will be a very prolific writer.  

Have always a lot of ideas to work on: another reason why people don't write a lot is that they seem not to have ideas about what to write. Don't let this happen to you. Maintain a file or a notebook with ideas for future work. If you are into create novels, write possible ideas for future novels, with a list of characters and a possible plot. Whenever you start, take one of these ideas and develop it further. You will have something to work at all times.  Make sure that when you have something in your mind this is quickly put into your notes. This way, you will not forget your best ideas and they will be ready to be developed whenever you have the opportunity.  

How to avoid doing research: you can avoid doing research, and therefore having more time to write. The basic idea is to write something that you already know. You have lot of information about several subjects. If you have an academic degree, this is even more information that you have and that can be used to your advantage. You can become a prolific writer just by putting together information that you already know.  

But even if you know nothing, you can always write fiction: fiction is the ultimate realm for prolific writers, because they can create their own subjects and use imagination to tell stories about them. It is a beautiful thing when you can use your mind to create stories that your readers are interested in.  By writing about this your enrich your life as well as the life of your readers. I recommend that, if you want to become a prolific writer, you should consider fiction as a way of producing more content. Right now, the most prolific writer in the world is a fiction writer (a Brazilian who has written more than 1000 pulp fiction books in several genera).  

If you decide to become a prolific writer, there are several opportunities that you can pursue. You can write your own works, but you can also write copy for other people, and make good money with this. You can also work as an academic and write scientific works that will improve the standards of life for humanity. There is a lot of things that you can by starting with the simple decision of being a prolific writer.  


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    • jycmba profile image

      jycmba 8 years ago from Los Angeles CA

      One of the main lessons that I've gotten from writers I'd consider prolific like Stephen King is that "writers write".. workshops, how-to books, etc. are all good but in the end you need to "just do it" - the times when my writing has flowed have often come during periods where I've been better about writing my Morning Pages - 3 handwritten pages of meditation on paper. It's something I picked up from Julia Cameron's Artist Way.