One of the most difficult aspects of writing is…

For me, one of the most difficult aspects of writing is…wait for it, wait for it…


Surprise you? Maybe you expected plotting, or coming up with ideas, or writing a synopsis, or even querying a publisher.

After 17 (really? 17?) completed books, I believe I have conquered all of the above. And I have a bit of an in with my current publisher. 😉

But, logically, you’d also think that the amount of time it takes to write a book wouldn’t be so daunting anymore, right?


Before I started writing, I worked as an auditor for the local school system. My job entailed sifting through records to see that checks and balances were in place and that the school operated with good accounting practices. Every day, or every couple of days, I worked at a different school. The longest audits took a week, maybe two, but those were rare. Basically, every time I wrote the report, I wrapped things up and moved on to the next school.

Not with writing.

A writer’s work is NEVER done.

Besides all the planning, the marketing, the promoting–all those extraneous tasks–the actual writing of a book takes months, sometimes years, depending on several factors such as word count, how much time a writer invests, etc.

one of the most difficult aspects of writing writers Dora Hiers Fiction Faith & Foodies

So, coming from a background where I experienced that sense of accomplishment on a daily basis to working on the same project for months…how do I recondition myself? How do I measure my time and feel satisfied with my progress? I…

  1. set daily word count goals to track my progress in an Excel spreadsheet.
  2. don’t focus on the end date, just what I plan to accomplish each day.
  3. write books with varying lengths, just to shake up my schedule a bit.
  4. discovered my peak writing time and use it. With my body clock, I can pump out double the words in the mornings, but after lunch, my word count and creativity declines drastically. So, I write only in the mornings. Of course, that’s not possible for everyone. The point is to find your peak time and reserve that window for writing, as much as possible.
  5. garner the support of family and friends. My family and friends all know my writing schedule. OK, so I might’ve growled and answered in monosyllables when they called in the morning just to chat. But, hey, I don’t bother them while they’re working, either.

For my writer friends, what’s the most difficult aspect of writing for you?

For my non-writer friends, how do you gauge your work day? How do you measure your satisfaction for a job well-done?

Rejection…NOT the end of your dreams!

12 books. That’s how many inspirational romances I have contracted and/or published with Pelican Book Group. Twelve. 

Over the last year or so, I have alluded to a tug to write mainstream romance, stories minus a distinct faith element. Sometimes I feel as if I’m the middle of the rope in a tug-o-war. Each side jerks my arm in their direction with equal intensity. 

So, last year I dived in to clean and wholesome romance. No sex scenes, no cursing, no need to hide the books from your kids or grandkiddos. But definitely a tad more heat than most Christian books.  

I finished the first book in the Kester Ranch Cowboys series, Roping the Cowboy, and sent it to four mainstream publishers and two agents. Nine months, four rejections and two no responses later, I finally acknowledged defeat. 

Rejection is NOT the end of your dreams!

Because after reading through the story again, I deserved the rejections. Yes, the romance lacked fullness. Long sentences slowed it down. The first kiss came too late in the story. The heroine wasn’t likable. I could go on…

One publisher cited a detailed list of where it fell short, and awesome crit partners offered critical input to strengthen the story…

If I was willing to invest the time and sweat equity.

Was I? 

We’re not just talking a few hours of edits. This involved a total remodel and would take an entire month, probably more.

At this point, some writers toss their manuscript in the recycle bin or hurl it into the deep recesses of their closet, and wave the white flag. Others sob buckets and fling fiery insults toward the publisher/agent who rejected them. 

Not me. I am forever grateful!

Because their valuable input

1. Pointed out serious flaws in my manuscript and offered the chance to fix them before throwing my baby out into the world.

2. Provided the impetus and lit a fire for me to go indie.

3. Proved that I can do this. That I’m in this writing gig for the long haul. That sometimes the old way is not necessarily the best way for me. That rejection isn’t necessarily a bad thing…

Rejection is NOT the end of your dreams!

God uses our negatives, our perceived failures, and creates something beautiful, life-changing, and totally mind-blowing.

Like a new author name for my non-inspirational titles. And why not a publisher, too? 

Roping the Cowboy by Tori Kayson
Coming OCT 1 with
Grace Legacy Publishing

More on my new name and the steps to create a business later. For now, just know that rejection does NOT have to mean the end of your dreams. It could be the beginning!

You can do this!