August 29, 2023
Note From Rochelle
Today’s tip talks about how accountability can help you get more writing done—and introduces this fall’s writing accountability group.
Rochelle, the Write Now! Coach
Connect and Write More
by Rochelle Melander
The only good teachers for you are those friends who love you, who think you are interesting, or very important, or wonderfully funny; whose attitude is: “Tell me more.” —Brenda Ueland
How do you stay accountable to your writing?
During National Novel Writing Month, many people track their word count on the NaNo site. In other times, we might give ourselves stickers or check off a to-do list. I color in a little square in my bullet journal for every hour I spend writing.
But none of these tracking tools help me stay as accountable as connecting with other writers.
The data proves it. In a study done by The American Society of Training and Development (ASTD), people increase their chances of success by 65 percent if they commit to someone. They up it by 95 percent when they keep an accountability appointment with someone who knows their goals.
Here are three ways to get accountable.
1. Connect with a colleague. Create a pact with another writer. Check in regularly to write or to report on writing. Some of my clients meet with other writers to “cowrite” either online or in cafes. Others find that it helps just to text each other before and after their writing sessions. Still others find that just reporting on their writing for the week helps them stay accountable and get writing done.
2. Take a class. Many craft-based classes at places like The Loft (https://loft.org/) offer writers the opportunity to do writing assignments and turn them in to classmates or their instructor. This can be a helpful way to build accountability into your writing schedule.
3. Join a Critique Group. When we invite other writers to read and critique our writing, we expand our understanding of good writing. From complex comments on structure and voice to technical lessons on commas and run-on sentences, a good critique can strengthen our writing. [Pro Tip: Check the website of national writing groups to find a reliable critique group. I belong to a group through the Wisconsin chapter of The Society of Children’s Writers and Book Illustrators (SCBWI).]
4. Join an accountability group! For years, I’ve met with small networking groups for accountability. When I wanted to quit, these connections have helped me to leap forward. That’s why I started the Writing Accountability Group—to help writers connect, commit to their goals, and get more done. If you’re interested in learning more, check out our page on the website or email me for more information. (https://writenowcoach.com/writing-accountability-group/)