Write Every Day

A young writer penned these words:

“I haven’t written for a few days, because I wanted first of all to think about my diary. It’s an odd idea for someone like me to keep a diary; not only because I have never done so before, but because it seems to me that neither I—nor for that matter anyone else—will be interested in the unbosomings of a thirteen-year-old schoolgirl. Still, what does that matter? I want to write, but more than that, I want to bring out all kinds of things that lie buried deep in my heart”

Amazing and deep words from someone so young.

Just about every writing coach or mentor begin their advice to new and experienced writers with these words, “Write something every day.”

This is why many of the best writers of books over the last couple centuries worked as newspaper or periodical journalists. They needed to write every day and writing became as natural as breathing, so when the time came to write a book, the process came relatively easy to them. They could focus on the story and the actual message in their book since the process of writing, putting coherent words and sentences together with some creative style came second nature.

The more frequently you do something, the easier it becomes.

I consistently urge authors to blog regularly and post original content in their social media on a regular basis, as if it is a periodical with a deadline. The reason is to establish your voice as it relates to your message platform, the driving theme, which undergirds every author’s work.

But there is another reason. The simple act of writing something on a regular basis will exercise the writing-muscles. Certainly, any number of Christian teachers will encourage people to journal their thoughts as a way to capture their spiritual journey so when they look back, their own words will remind them how God led them.

There’s nothing like reading your own words to make something more real to you.

Blogging regularly into your author social media platform doesn’t replace the personal journaling, but it accomplishes the same thing, showing a progression of thought to your readers, binding them closer to you as they journey with you.

Blogging and posting is also a discipline, which will crystallize your faith and message. It becomes easier the more you do it. And you never know where it might lead.

There is a specific reason for this post today. Yesterday, June 12 marked the 75th anniversary of a simple gift from a father to a daughter.

Otto Frank gave his daughter Anne a blank autograph book for her thirteenth birthday. She used it as a diary in the middle of a world war. The quote at the beginning of this post is from this young girl amidst Nazi occupation.

She died before her sixteenth birthday in early 1945 at the Bergen-Belsen Nazi death camp, just weeks before the Allies liberated it.

A family friend, Miep Gies, kept the diary safe and gave it to Anne’s father Otto after the war. Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl was published in 1952 and translated into dozens of languages and has been read worldwide for over six and a half decades.

Go ahead; write something every day…you never know who might read it.

17 Responses to Write Every Day

  1. Avatar
    Rebekah Dorris June 13, 2017 at 5:26 am #

    It’s also amazing how regular writing clarifies your voice. Just reading the excerpt above I was pretty sure it was Anne Frank because of the voice alone. Just as I bet I could differentiate between you, Mr. Laube, Mrs. Ball, and Mrs. Murray by your voices (as well as several of your frequent commenters). It’s amazing how God gives each of us not only unique physical voices, but also unique writing voices once we’ve practiced them and learned how to use them!

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    Karen Saari June 13, 2017 at 5:46 am #

    Anne was very wise at her young age. Sometimes we do need to just write it out to find out what’s going on inside of us. This can lead to truth being revealed, or perhaps conviction or maybe it’s simply a day to praise the Lord! But writing it out, like Abraham had to walk it out in the land God gave him, helps us get to know what’s going on and then, hopefully if we’ve stored His word in our heart, what to do about it.

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    Sarah Beth Marr June 13, 2017 at 5:55 am #

    This is such a beautiful post, Dan. Thank you for inspiring us to keep writing.

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    Glenda June 13, 2017 at 6:06 am #

    “Go ahead; write something every day…you never know who might read it.”

    Great words to live by!

    Thank you, Dan.

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    Bill Hendricks June 13, 2017 at 6:39 am #

    The “writer” who doesn’t write every day is akin to a “swimmer” who doesn’t breathe every day. Good luck sustaining that!

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    CJ Myerly June 13, 2017 at 6:48 am #

    I can’t agree with this enough. I find the more I write, the more I want to write. I’ve written a little bit everyday since NaNoWriMo, and it seems more natural to me now than it did then.

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    Craig Pynn June 13, 2017 at 6:51 am #

    Great post, Dan. Even though I don’t plan to write another book, I still write six days a week into my online blog with reflections on each of the three sections of Scripture (Psalms, OT, NT) via the Moravian Daily Text. These carry one through the entire Bible in two years—and the Psalms twice. I’m on my second orbit around and just wrote my 867th post this morning. Writing is a great way to really get to know God’s word!

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    Joey Rudder June 13, 2017 at 7:24 am #

    What a powerful and timely post, Dan. I’ve been telling my daughter about Anne Frank and wanting her to read her diary this summer. I remember reading it as a teen and crying when, after growing close to her through her own words, I felt like I lost a friend in that concentration camp. To this day I’m still moved to tears even at her picture.

    And the past few days I’ve started praying more specifically about my blog…it’s reaching areas I never realized it could reach…and wondering what God wants me to do with it. Devotional?

    As I wait on God’s leading, I will continue to post on my blog, write those personal notes to Him (He told me to “put the camera down,” so I don’t lose the intimacy with Him to the blog), and continue working on/with the characters of my first novel as we move into the second.

    As you quoted Anne Frank above, “I want to write, but more than that, I want to bring out all kinds of things that lie buried deep in my heart.” And I praise God because I’m finding more of Him buried within my heart.

    Thank you so much, Dan. God bless you.

  9. Dan Balow
    Dan Balow June 13, 2017 at 7:32 am #

    I made a factual error in this post. Anne died at Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. She was transferred there from Auschwitz. We will correct this.

    As the allies were closing in from east and west, the Nazi’s moved entire populations of camps into Germany. Auschwitz is in Poland.

    Thanks to alert readers!

  10. Avatar
    Carol Ashby June 13, 2017 at 7:43 am #

    I love the thought of someone I may never know finding something that touches them in something I’ve written. I’ve read so many things by authors far away and often long dead that I want to thank them for in heaven.

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    Robert Wilkerson June 13, 2017 at 8:28 am #

    A good reminder of good advice.



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    Robin E. Mason June 13, 2017 at 9:44 am #

    first of all, i love Anne Frank, have always loved her story – AND i played her mother when we did the stage production when i was in high school.
    second, thank you for affirming that blogging does “count” as writing! i was talking to a friend today and compared my blog to the business bit of my writing – it takes away from “real” writing time but is just as important. right?? (ps, i think i ROCK my blog! ha!)

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    Sheri Dean Parmelee, Ph.D June 13, 2017 at 10:01 am #

    Dan, I write every day- that’s great advice that helped me finish my dissertation in 12 months (400 pages!). Thanks for sharing such important information!

    • Avatar
      Carol Ashby June 13, 2017 at 1:15 pm #

      That’s 1.1 pages a day, Sheri. Sounds so easy when you do the math, but that ignores all the research you had to do to know what to put in the thesis. Is Victoria Susan making progress as fast or faster than the dissertation did?

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    Judy Morrow June 13, 2017 at 10:20 am #

    Thanks, Dan, for this excellent post–the perfect encouragement I needed today.
    It also brought back memories of the daily diaries I kept from age 14 to 25. I’m grateful for the Christmas gift from my aunt of a five-year diary that set me off on that writing journey. Decades later I so treasure those memory-laden diaries!

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    Peggy Booher June 13, 2017 at 2:16 pm #

    Thanks, Dan, for the encouragement to write everyday. I’ve kept a journal, off-and-on, though mostly to record “nature notes”–bird or wildlife sightings, and what the weather’s like. Some of those writings show up later in devotionals. I’m realizing (again) that when I don’t write everyday, it’s as though days slip by without any notation that they existed or were important to me. I lose something inside when I don’t take the time to write everyday.

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    Martha Whiteman Rogers June 13, 2017 at 9:49 pm #

    I try to write in my journal everyday. I go back and read over them and I am reminded anew of how God’s hand is over all that has happened and all that I am. Your post is an encouragement to keep me going. Someday I hope my children or grandchildren will read some of the entries and see the power of God in my life. If not in my journal, I’m writing something somewhere for somebody. The Diary of Anne Frank touched my heart when I read it, and the movie was even more touching. I appreciate the reminder of how the written word will live long after we’re gone.

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