I’ve read yet another awesome indie novel. I’m excited to share my thoughts with you on Build Your Best Writing Life: Essential Strategies for Personal Writing Success by Kristen Kieffer today. I read this over the holiday break and it did not disappoint.
Kristen and I go way back as online author friends. I’m not sure if we met on Facebook or Instagram but ever since, I’ve been a huge fan of her work at Well Storied, her friendly Twitter community, and the pump-up motivation and updates we send each other. Kristen is an example of building up other authors, so it’s no surprise that she would pour her heart and soul into Build Your Best Writing Life.
Before I get ahead of myself, let’s dive into the book review. If you’re an indie or trad author looking to write and publish well, then this needs to go on your TBR list ASAP.
Rating: 4 stars
Is there a gap between where you are and where you want to be in your writing life?
Maybe you have a drawer full of unfinished manuscripts or a story idea you’re struggling to develop. Maybe you’re frustrated with your writing progress or overwhelmed by creative doubt, burnout, or writer’s block. Maybe you just can’t seem to sit down and write.
No matter the roadblock standing between you and writing success, here’s the good news: You’re capable of becoming the writer you want to be—and that work can begin today. In this actionable and empowering guide to personal writing success, Kristen Kieffer shares 25 insightful chapters designed to help you:
- Cultivate confidence in your skills and stories
- Develop a personal writing habit you can actually sustain
- Improve your writing ability with tools for intentional growth
- Discover what you (really) want from your writing life—and how to get it!
By the end of Build Your Best Writing Life, you’ll know how to harness the simple techniques that can help you win your inner creative battles, finish projects you can be proud to share with the world, and work with focus to turn your writing dreams into reality.
What I Enjoyed
I know Kristen enough to expect this, but it was refreshing to see mental health championed in this guide. I’ve always felt repelled by the “blood, sweat, and tears” types of writing books—the kinds that essentially suggest that if you aren’t going hard every day on your writing, you might as well give up. Conversely, Kristen guides her fellow writers on how to set reasonable, achievable goals that will help avoid burnout, frustration, and quitting.
Also, Kieffer’s chapters (I’m sure every chapter) have some sort of activity or list of questions to answer. I read most of this on a plane, so I’ll need to go back to some sections to answer the questions on my phone or in a Word doc. Her questions are very meaningful and helpful to help you understand where you’re stuck and where you’re succeeding.
Whether you’re new or veteran to writing and publishing, there is something to learn from Kieffer. She provides enough information that makes sense and feels doable to everyone. As someone who has experienced multiple bouts of writer burnout, I found some solace in the pages.
My Final Thoughts
If you get the ebook, just know that you need someplace to take notes. If not, you’ll need the print version so you can bookmark, underline, etc. There’s so much in this book. It’s not just a bunch of blog posts; these are steps to set good writing habits and get your book out there. I’m confident that if you have a pain point concerning the author’s life, you’ll likely find an answer or closure in Kieffer’s book.
Hopefully, I shared enough to pique your curiosity. Want to get reading? If so, I highly recommend you look up Kristen Kieffer via social media: