The Writer's Cookbook

Writing, productivity, publishing.

Category: Productivity (Page 1 of 8)

Download your copy of Productivity for Writers today!

Productivity for Writers is out now!

I first announced Productivity for Writers back in January 2016.

SO MUCH has happened since then.

I decided to make Productivity for Writers my third book because I wanted a break from the world of Hollie and Fayth.

I also chose it because, out of all of my other books, it was the one that was furthest along.

Had I not announced it so long ago, I may have waited a little longer to release it. I might’ve waited until I’d released a couple more books. Or I may have put it off indefinitely.

Productivity for Writers was the hardest book I’ve written so far.

It pushed me very far out of my comfort zone.

Of course, I’m always uncomfortable when sharing my writing with you, but I’ve gotten used to that feeling, both on this blog and with the adventures of Hollie and Fayth.

The difference is that I’ve never published a nonfiction book before.

It’s a whole different market, and I have no idea what to expect.

That’s both a terrifying and exciting process.

Like I advise in Productivity for Writers—and like I learnt while working on What Happens in New York—I’m trying to channel my anxiety into excitement and getting shit done, but quite often that’s easier said than done.

However, forcing my way through the anxiety and using it to drive me instead of destroy me works. And it feels pretty good knowing that I’m one step closer to controlling my anxiety, too.

Use the nervous energy your anxiety creates to drive you instead of destroy you. Click To Tweet

What’s Productivity for Writers all about?

I wrote Productivity for Writers for my younger self.

It’s everything I wish I could’ve told myself five years ago, back when I was in a dark, desolate place.

It’s everything I wish I could tell my friends who don’t feel they have the time to write.

It’s everything I wish I could’ve told Boyfriend’s coworker who was so depressed that he didn’t save a single word that he wrote. Ever.

Whether you can’t write because you’re short on time, you don’t feel that your writing is good enough, or your mental illness interferes with your writing, Productivity for Writers can help.

However, Productivity for Writers won’t work for you if you’re not ready to listen.

Good advice is only good advice if you're willing to listen. Click To Tweet

Many of us buy nonfiction books and think that they’ll offer us some form of enlightenment, but then we read them and don’t think that the lessons in them apply to us. We don’t do the activities in the books, or we read them with a fixed mindset and don’t consider their advice.

If that’s you, then Productivity for Writers can’t help you.

You have to be willing to change.

You have to want to write more.

You have to be willing to make sacrifices.

You have to want to put your writing above all else.

You have to give the book’s advice a chance. A proper chance, not a half-arse one.

Only then will you know if this is the book for you.

If you’re not sure, you can download a free sample of Productivity for Writers to see how you feel about.

Is Productivity for Writers the book for you?

Productivity for Writers won’t hold your hand.

It won’t pussyfoot around what’s stopping you from writing.

It’s a tough-love guide.

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you’ll already have a feel for my writing style.

I’m here to be honest with you about my struggles, and about the issues you may encounter, too.

And I’m not going to sugarcoat the solutions to those problems.

You won’t get anywhere fast by tiptoeing around solutions.

You’ll achieve your dreams faster by accepting that you have a problem, and actively seeking a solution.

To get to what we want in life, we have to be willing to make sacrifices.

We have to be willing to put our goals and our dreams above all else.

That’s the only way.

And if you’re not hurting anyone else in the process, then why shouldn’t you?

Download your copy of Productivity for Writers today!

You can download your copy of Productivity for Writers now on Kindle, iBooks, Kobo, Nook, and more. (If you click the link it will take you to all of the platforms where it’s available 🙂 )

You can also download your free sample of Productivity for Writers to find out if it’s the book for you.

You can also read some samples here:

I don’t have a print version planned right now, but if enough people request one, I may change my mind.

Happy writing!

Writing helps me to deal with my depression.

How Writing Helps Me Handle My Depression

I never used to talk about my depression much. When I first wrote a draft of this post—back in October 2015!—there was only one person I discussed it with.

Since then, I’ve tried to be more open about my experiences in the hopes that it helps other people, too.

It’s not easy, though.

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Why you'll never achieve perfection as a writer

Why You’ll Never Achieve Perfection (And What to Aim for Instead)

Some people see perfection as a badge of honour; a cross to bear that they just have to carry the burden of.

They use it as their biggest weakness in a job interview, as if wanting everything you create to be flawless is even possible.

But it’s not.

Perfection should be treated like a snake that wants to bite you.

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Find out why you need to embrace rejection in this exclusive excerpt from Productivity for Writers.

Why You Need to Embrace Rejection

There isn’t a single published writer out there who hasn’t been rejected at least once.

In fact, I think you’d struggle to find a writer who’s only been rejected once.

Even Stephen King had short stories rejected when he first started out.

Harry Potter was rejected by numerous publishers, and J.K.Rowling had some pretty harshly-worded rejection letters for her Cormoran Strike novels, too.

Some authors get to the point where their name alone is enough to attract the attention of a publisher.

To get to that point, though, you have to go through what feels like endless rejections.

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Are you on the brink of burning out? Discover the signs of burnout and how to cope.

How to Deal With Stress and Burnout

Think of your energy levels like a battery.

Certain things recharge that battery, while others drain it.

You may find dealing with people draining, while alone time recharges you.

You may find that some days writing helps you to recharge, while on other days it drains you.

It can depend on what stage of the writing process you’re at, or what’s going on in your life outside of your writing.

Just like when you let your phone battery get close to 0%, the lower your battery levels get, the longer it takes to recharge.

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Can Toxic Friends Kill Your Productivity?

This is an excerpt from my upcoming book, Productivity for Writers.

If you find this post useful, please take a minute to share it with your (non-toxic) friends 🙂


Think back for a moment to when you were at school.

What was life like?

Were you popular?

A teacher’s pet?

An outcast?

I was somewhere between an outcast and a teacher’s pet.

Most of the teachers knew who I was, although I only paid attention to the classes I liked.

Some of my classmates knew who I was, others didn’t.

For the most part, this didn’t bother me.

I was perfectly happy with my circle of friends.

Or was I?

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Scrivener vs Novlr: Which is the best writing software for you?

Scrivener vs. Novlr – Which is the Best Writing Software For You?

Scrivener and Novlr are two of the most popular writing programs out there for authors.

Unlike Microsoft Word, their sole purpose is to help you achieve your goal of writing your novel.

Before purchasing Scrivener a couple of years ago, I did all of my writing in Microsoft Word.

The further into a manuscript I became, the more difficult I found it to navigate.

As I don’t write chronologically, I’d have to either leave a note in the document or write scenes in separate files and piece them together as I went along.

It was a horrible process.

When I discovered Scrivener, everything changed.

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Preorder Your Copy of Productivity for Writers!

It’s been over eighteen months in the making, but you can FINALLY preorder your copy of Productivity for Writers!

Productivity for Writers is out on 29 September 2017!

Currently only Kobo is available, but other devices (including Amazon, of course) are coming soon!

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Does Exercise Really Affect Productivity? Part Two

A few weeks ago now, I embarked on a (totally unscientific) experiment to find out if exercising more affected my productivity.

There are a few gaps this time as I keep forgetting to write updates (and make notes of what songs I listen to, which I’m sure you’re gutted about), but I’m still exercising most days and finding it to be beneficial.

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Does Exercise Really Affect Your Productivity Levels? I’m About to Find Out…

Everyone always harks on about how great exercise is.

It helps you sleep better, it improves your memory, it stops you from ageing as quickly, and it increases productivity.

Or so they say.

I’ve heard all these claims and always felt inclined to exercise more, but the truth is, I just don’t enjoy it.

Exercise is also one of the main things that triggers my asthma, so that just puts me off further.

I was fairly fit as a child, dancing and swimming regularly, but when I hit my teenage years and suffered from nasty period pains, I stopped going.

(Yes, I know it’s good for them, but when you’re a teenager and no painkillers help, are you going to choose exercise or bed?)

With the exception of a few brief stints of gym-going, I’ve been pretty unfit for the last ten years or so.

This wasn’t such a big deal when I was in my early twenties, but as I get older, I can feel my body starting to protest.

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