15 Habits of Successful Writers

  1. Write something EVERY day
  2. Read (a little) every day
  3. Watch a little TV or movies weekly
  4. Eliminate distractions, but write when and where it works best for you
  5. Observe and experience, actively
  6. Plan your writing (yep, I mean storyboard and outline)
  7. Make notes or a journal of observations, anecdotes, and experiences
  8. Set up an editorial calendar of the things you’d like to write
  9. Blog, submit for contests, submit for publication, tell people you write
  10. Work with and support writers better than you are
  11. Help and encourage writers that aren’t as good as you yet
  12. Attend and teach conferences and workshops
  13. Write until the end before you edit
  14. Read your work aloud
  15. Write outside your comfort zone, in different genres and formats

One to grow on:

16. Revise in one comprehensive pass, with discipline and attention to detail.

Additional Resources:

Ava Jae, Five Good Habits for Writers, http://avajae.blogspot.com/2013/09/5-good-habits-for-writers.html

Charlotte Frost, Forming Good Writing Habits, http://www.phd2published.com/2013/11/13/forming-good-writing-habits-by-charlotte-frost/

Leo Babauta, Learn From the Greats: 7 Writing Habits of Amazing Writers, http://writetodone.com/learn-from-the-greats-7-writing-habits-of-amazing-writers/

Joe Bunting, Five Smarter Habits of Great Writers, http://writetodone.com/five-smarter-habits-of-great-writers/

Hamilton College, Habits of Effective Writers, http://www.hamilton.edu/writing/writing-resources/habits-of-effective-writers

Melissa Donovan, How to Develop Better Writing Habits, http://www.writingforward.com/better-writing/writing-habits


Pamela Fagan Hutchins, winner of the 2017 Silver Falchion award for Best Mystery (Fighting for Anna), writes overly long e-mails, hilarious nonfiction (What Kind of Loser Indie Publishes, and How Can I Be One, Too?), and series mysteries, like those in her What Doesn’t Kill You world, which includes the bestselling Saving Grace and the 2015 and 2016 WINNERS of the USA Best Book Award for Cross Genre Fiction, Heaven to Betsy and Hell to Pay. You can snag her newest release, Bombshell, if you’ve already run the rest of the table. She teaches writing, publishing, and promotion at the SkipJack Publishing Online School (where you can take How to Sell a Ton of Books, FREE) and writes about it here on the SkipJack Publishing blog.

Pamela resides deep in the heart of Nowheresville, Texas and in the frozen north of Snowheresville, Wyoming. She has a passion for great writing and smart authorpreneurship as well as long hikes and trail rides with her hunky husband, giant horses, and pack of rescue dogs, donkeys, and goats. She also leaps medium-tall buildings in a single bound (if she gets a good running start).


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4 Responses to 15 Habits of Successful Writers

  1. Great list! That was one of my favorite events at ComicPalooza. Hope to do this again with you next year.

    • Pamela says:

      Dominick, you were the BEST moderator ever. Seriously. It was a delight to meet you, and I hope to do this again with you next year too!

  2. To piggyback on #14: Read your work aloud…to someone else. I can read my stories 100 times, and not catch everything I catch when I read my work aloud to my weekly critique group. Doing this shaved of 50 pages off my screenplay to submit to the Austin Film Festival (it’s supposed to be between 90 – 12) pages. I got it down from 168 to 117. 🙂

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