Complacency: A Writer’s Danger Zone

How do you avoid the danger zone of complacency in your writing?  


A writer who slips into complacency enters a danger zone guaranteed to destroy a successful career. When we relax in the quality of our work, we set ourselves up to lose readership. 


One of the biggest pitfalls in a writer’s life is a sense of overconfidence that eliminates a dedication to growing in the craft. Having the false belief that previous publications, contracts, and name recognition will continue to soar with the writer investing little input can have dire consequences. 


Continued publishing credits mean writers cannot stop the flow of hard work. The constant challenge of quality writing is as critical as the inspiration motivating us to write.  


Writers who ignore the warning signs of pride may blame the market, their agent, the publishing house—anyone but themselves. They lose passion in their writing and boredom marches in. A good kick in the seat of the pants might shake reality into place, but why take a step into the danger zone called complacency? 



Friends, look at the following ten ways to ensure complacency doesn’t happen to our writing life. 


  1. Avoid burnout to stay enthusiastic about our writing. If we work seven days a week from early morning until late at night, the thrill escapes us. 

  1. Celebrate life. If we accept life is all about writing and nothing else, we become dull by missing the excitement of the world’s beauty and adventure. 

  1. Creativity is not just for writing, marketing, and promotion. We need other interests that appease our creative spirit. Invest time and energy into a hobby. 

  1. Develop friendships with people who aren’t writers or readers. Our relationships can stagnate when we are super-focused on only bookish buddies. 

  1. Enlist an accountability partner. Reaching a goal is no fun if we don’t have someone to keep us on track or share in the achievements. 

  1. Establish writing values or revisit our mission statement. What is the most important reason we are in this business? 

  1. Evaluate our past writing projects. Are they our best, or are we allowing limited time and hurried efforts to rob readers of our most excellent work? 

  1. Schedule daily time to grow in the craft. We will never have all the answers to the daily changes in the publishing industry, but we can commit to learning a little every day. 

  1. Stay in touch with other writers. Be active in an online or face to face group. Give back to others. 

  1. Take risks and try something new. A different type of writing project or an innovative method of marketing and promotion provides enthusiasm that can spur us on.   



How do you avoid the danger zone of complacency in your writing?  


DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She is a storyteller and creates action-packed, suspense-filled novels to thrill readers. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests.  DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Mystery Writers of America, and International Thriller Writers. DiAnn continues her passion for helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country.  Connect with DiAnn on her various social media platforms here: