WOW! Women on Writing Blog Tour Post by Karen Brown Tyson: “The Power of Asking, “Why” to Improve Your Writing

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I am so pleased to be hosting Karen Brown Tyson today as part of her blog tour for her book “Time to Refresh”, with Wow! Women on Writing.

Karen is offering solid advice on how we all can improve our writing. As I read her post, it was as if a light went off. I had been trying and failing to write 16667 words a day for NaNoWriMo this past year and felt I had failed when I didn’t complete 50,000. Karen made the point that we have to set goals for ourselves. Thank you Karen.

 

The Power of Asking, ‘Why’ to Improve Your Writing
By Karen Brown Tyson

Do you remember always asking your parents, “why?” You wanted to know why you had to eat your vegetables, why you had to go to bed so early, and why you could not play longer outside. When you wanted more information, you always asked why.

As a writer, you must be just as persistent when something in your writing life is not working. When you find it hard to write blog posts, magazine articles, or your next book, ask yourself, “why.”

In my work as a certified Six-Sigma communicator, I love helping people find new ways to improve their plans, projects, and writing. Change is my thing, so when I hear writers tell me how hard it is for them to finish their writing projects, I immediately ask “why?”

Change begins with me
Last year I wanted to understand my inability to finish personal writing projects. I started by asking myself why I lose interest so easily. My list of reasons included too much work, family obligations like taking my son to swim practice, and two workouts per day. The list was long and revealed one important thing—most of my reasons were excuses.

But why have I relied on these excuses for so long? I turned to an exercise I like to use with clients to solve problems called “5 Whys.” You begin with a problem and with each answer you ask “why” to drill down to find the root cause of the problem.

Here’s a glimpse at my “5 Whys” on my inability to write my book.

Question #1: Why did you stop writing your last book?
Answer: Because I was waiting to find the right time during the day to write.

Question #2: Why did you wait to find the right time each day?
Answer: Since every day is different, I am afraid I cannot get anything accomplished because of possible interruptions.

Question #3: Why do you allow possible interruptions to stop you from writing?
Answer: Because I want to write at least 2,500 words every time I sit down to write.

Question #4: Why do you want to write 2,500 words every time you sit down to write?
Answer: Because I read articles about writers who can write between 2,500 to 3,500 words per day. If I can write 2,500 words per day, I can finish writing my book in 30 days.

Question #5: Why is it important for you to finish writing your book in 30 days?
Answer: I don’t know.

Whoa! Did I stop writing because I was afraid I wouldn’t meet a daily word count and finish writing my book in 30 days? It blew me away.

In that moment, I knew I had to change my approach to writing.

How I improved my writing life
The first thing I did to improve my writing life was to get rid of the idea I had to be like other writers. Second, I stopped focusing on writing 2,500 words per day. With those two decisions, I completely changed the trajectory of my writing life.

I created a new writing habit which included one key component: I focused on writing in the morning for two hours every day. I chose two hours in the mornings because it’s when I have the most energy to write. Whether I wrote 500 words or 2,000 during that time did not matter. What mattered most was showing up every day to write for two hours.

The result: I finished writing my first book in less than 90 days.

Time to act
Analyze your current writing life to determine what works and what doesn’t work. Once you find the problem, ask yourself “why” to find the root cause. Be honest with yourself. Determine what small actions you will take to improve.

 

Karen Brown Tyson is the author of, Time to Refresh: A 21-Day Devotional to Renew Your Mind After Being Laid Off, Fired or Sidelined.
Karen works online, in person and by phone as a communication and writing coach. Karen helps her entrepreneurial clientele focus on business and nonfiction writing.

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Be sure to check out all the stops on this amazing book tour for “Time to Refresh”

— Blog Tour Dates

November 26th @ The Muffin

What goes better in the morning than a muffin? Grab your coffee and stop by the Muffin blog where you can read an interview with author Karen Brown Tyson and enter to win a copy of her book Time to Refresh.

muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com

November 29th @ Bookworm Blog

Be sure to stop by Anjanette’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s guest post on managing career, home, and ministry.

bookworm66.wordpress.com

 

November 29th @ The Frugalista Mom

Visit Rozelyn’s blog where you can read her review of Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

http://thefrugalistamom.com/

 

November 30th @ Amateur Twin Mom

Visit Jonelle’s blog to read what she has to say about Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

https://www.amateurtwinmom.com

 

December 3rd @ Beverley A Baird Blog

Visit Beverley’s blog where Karen Brown Tyson talks about how to improve your writing life.

https://beverleyabaird.wordpress.com/

 

December 5th @ Break Even Books

Stop by Erik’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about how to build your personal brand.

https://breakevenbooks.com/

 

December 5th @  Jill Sheets Blog

Stop by Jill’s blog today where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about how to improve your writing life.

https://jillsheets.blogspot.com/

 

December 6th @ Beverley A Baird Blog

Visit Beverley’s blog again where she shares her thoughts about Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh. 

https://beverleyabaird.wordpress.com/

 

December 7th @ Bookworm Blog

Visit Anjanette’s blog again where she interviews author Karen Brown Tyson about her book Time to Refresh.

bookworm66.wordpress.com

 

December 8th @ A Storybook World

Visit Deirdra’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about fearless writing.

http://www.astorybookworld.com/

 

December 9th @ Reducing Overload

Stop by Peggy’s blog to read author Karen Brown Tyson’s post about journaling and stress management.

http://reducingoverload.com/

 

December 13th @ Memoir Writer’s Journey

Visit Kathleen’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about fearless writing.

https://krpooler.com/

 

December 13th @ M.C. Walker’s Blog

Visit M.C. Walker’s blog where she interviews author Karen Brown Tyson about her and her book Time to Refresh.

https://seeminoltawrite.com/

 

December 14th @ Strength 4 Spouses

Visit Wendi’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about having faith during difficult times.

https://strength4spouses.blog/

 

December 15th @ Jessica’s Reading Room

Visit Jessica’s blog where you can read her thoughts on Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

http://jessicasreadingroom.com

 

December 16th @ 12 Books

Visit Louise’s blog where she shares her opinion on Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

http://www.12books.co.uk/

 

December 18th @ Look to the Western Sky

Visit Margo’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about parenting.

https://www.margoldill.com/

 

December 20th @ Strength 4 Spouses

Visit Wendi’s blog again where you can read her opinion about Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

https://strength4spouses.blog/

 

December 20th @ The Faerie Review

Visit Lily Shadowlyn’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about journaling.

http://www.thefaeriereview.com/

 

December 21st @ The World of My Imagination

Visit Nicole’s blog where she shares her thoughts about Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

http://theworldofmyimagination.blogspot.com

 

December 23rd @ Look to the Western Sky

Be sure to stop by Margo’s blog again where you find out what she had to say about Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

https://www.margoldill.com/

 

December 23rd @ Coffee with Lacey

Visit Lacey’s blog where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about journaling.

http://coffeewithlacey.wordpress.com

 

December 24th @ Coffee with Lacey

Stop by Lacey’s blog again where she reviews Karen Brown Tyson’s book Time to Refresh.

http://coffeewithlacey.wordpress.com

 

December 27th @ The Frugalista Mom

Be sure to visit Rozelyn’s blog again where you can read Karen Brown Tyson’s blog post about change management.

http://thefrugalistamom.com/

 

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