Everyone has their own view of writing before they actually sit down to produce something for the first time. You'll only work when the muse hits you, because that's when you do the best work. Every single word you type will be the best it can be. You'll produce great works because you love the art and craft of writing. It's a slightly idealized view, making writers look like some sort of romantic artists.
The truth is, writing is a job like any other. If you want to finish books and get them published, you can't treat it like a hobby -- it has to be a profession. Writers may not divulge some of the inside secrets about what it's like to be an author, but the reality isn't as dramatic as you might think.
1. Everyone Struggles with Self-Doubt
Good writers and independent authors are never supremely confident in their work. They can always see the flaws, and always wish they could make it just a little bit better. If you're critical of your work, put those thoughts aside and work through it. It's normal to feel that way.
2. Yes, It Can be About the Money
It's the rare writer who doesn't think about getting paid for his work. Of course you want to put out the best book possible, but there's nothing wrong with wanting to get rewarded for all that labor. Making money from your art doesn't make you a sellout, it just means you've found a market that appreciates your efforts.
3. It Really is an Obsession
There are actually people in this world who don't like to write. You're not one of them. When you're not actually sitting with your hands on the keyboard, you're running through scenes in your head. Your characters talk to you like real people. Accept that you're a little bit weird and make time for your writing habit every day.
4. Your Work Never Feels Finished
Every writer looks at his work and thinks he could tweak just a little something more. They're never satisfied and never look on their works as finished products. This is a problem when writers forget that the perfect is the enemy of the good. You're work's never really done until it's in the hands of your readers. Aim toward that goal.
5. First Drafts are Garbage
You may think your golden words drip onto the screen perfect their first time out, but if they do, you'll be the only writer in the history of the world to do so. Oh, sure, you can do short articles or blog posts that are good first time out, but a book will always need some editing.
6. We're Always in Our Work
No matter how hard they try, writers always put a little something into every book they write. It may be a social attitude, a character from their past, or simply an environment they pass every day, but there's a little taste of the author in every one of his works. Don't try to fight it. It will happen to you.
7. Everyone Struggles With Procrastination
The most single-minded bestselling author in the world fights with days where weeding the garden and doing the dishes is more enticing than sitting down at the keyboard. The hard part is watching for your own behaviors and recognizing when it's happening to you. Don't let it turn into a habit, or you'll sabotage your own progress.
8. Writing is Hard
Even the most gifted writers in the world find it hard to put down words every day. It's a constant struggle to come up with new story lines and more interactions between your characters. Talent doesn't equate easy in this business. At times it can be tough to sit down and start writing, but it does get easier as you go along. And in the end, you may even produce something pretty amazing!
Keep the Faith and May the Force be with You!