Ask the Coach: 7 Steps to Recovering Writing Motivation After a Creative Setback – On Script Mag

In this month’s “Ask the Coach” article, I’m responding to a question from a reader about staying motivated and disciplined after receiving discouraging feedback. 

Hi Jenna, I recently had a major setback: some pretty discouraging feedback from a reader. What are some tips for staying motivated and disciplined as a writer, particularly when facing rejection or setbacks? I’m writing on spec.

In my response, I share seven steps for handling setbacks and moving forward:

  1. Recognize the need for recovery time — and take it.
  2. Consider the source.
  3. Ask for outside support, depending on the severity of the situation.
  4. Reconnect with your inner motivation and original vision for the story.
  5. When you’re ready, review the feedback through your storyteller’s lens.
  6. Craft a revision plan (or not!) based on your decisions.
  7. Aim to build a writing practice or habit.

We all face painful or challenging feedback as writers. Not everyone will like our work. The key is deciding if and how to use the feedback we receive for maximum effect after we’ve given ourselves time and space to recover so we can keep writing with clear hearts and minds.

Want the full scoop? Get all the details in the full article on Script Mag:
If you’ve got writing questions, please send them my way!
I’d love to answer them for you in my column.
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These Are a Few of My Favorite Things


This week I’ve rounded up a collection of my favorite Called to Write articles for you, designed to inspire your writing life, offer guidance and support for times you might be feeling stuck or overwhelmed, and even help you stay on track with your writing during the coming holidays. 


“Silver white winters that melt into springs
These are a few of my favorite things”

Feeling burned out?

While you might feel like you “should” be rested from staying at home so much this year, the truth is, this has been an exhausting, tumultuous, and difficult time, so giving yourself time to recover is important.

Here are two of my past favorite articles with suggestions about how to recover. 

7 Steps to Recovering From Creative Burnout

When you have nothing left


Wondering if you should be pushing to write when you’re sick, exhausted, or grieving?

Here’s one of my favorite articles about when to write, and when to take it easy:

When to Write and When to Call It a Day


What counts when it comes to writing?

On a lighter note, when it comes to writing regularly, sometimes writers twist themselves into knots thinking they have to be writing “new words” every single day of the year.

My opinion? Not so.

Hint: This article will help you adjust your mindset about what “counts” as “real writing,” and is critical when it comes to setting goals and resolutions for the coming year. 

What “Counts” as Writing?


Having trouble staying motivated to write in these uncertain times? 

Here are two articles designed to help you navigate these choppy waters and keep writing.

Living and Writing In Uncertain Times

7 Mindset Perspectives to Motivate Your Writing — On the Final Draft Blog


Want to keep writing through the holidays? 

Here are articles to bring holiday cheer and practical strategies to help you keep writing. 

What has writing given you that you’re grateful for?

10 Tips to Help You Keep Writing Through the Holidays


I hope you enjoyed this collection of articles and I’m wishing all the best to you and your writing in the coming days and weeks.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash