1. Don’t set yourself a writing routine or stick to it.
2. Always make sure that doing your writing is at the bottom of your list of priorities, and even when you are writing, if something else you have to do that day springs to mind, then go and do that instead.
3. If one of your friends comes round to invite you out for coffee, just go, no matter how busy you are with your writing.
4. Whenever you’re writing, answer the phone every time it rings and answer the door every time someone knocks.
5. Always feel guilty for doing your writing instead of doing what other people want you to do.
6. Don’t read any articles about writing, especially if it’s written by an expert.
7. If anyone ever tells you of a simple and profitable way to make money from your writing, don’t believe them and never try it.
8. Never take a writing course to hone your skills.
9. Don’t visit any writing sites on the internet, and never subscribe to their newsletters.
10. Don’t join any writer’s forums or participate in any online discussions.
11. Don’t get your own website to showcase your writing ability and writing services to the whole world.
12. Do everything you possibly can not to get your name known in the writing world.
13. Keep your work secret. Always put your writing away in a draw when you’ve finished and never show it to anyone – especially editors and publishers.
14. Don’t enter writing competitions.
15. Don’t submit articles to paying websites.
16. Never even think about writing a book.
17. Especially don’t consider writing a profitable e-book.
18. They say you should write at least 5 article proposals or short stories every week. If you do write them, don’t mail them.
19. If a magazine or publisher offers specific guidelines for submissions, don’t follow them.
20. If an editor likes your work and publishes it, never offer to write for them again.
21. If you send in a query to an editor and don’t hear anything for a couple of weeks, start ringing them and don’t stop until they make a decision about whether or not to publish your work.
22. If one publication rejects your work, assume that it’s worthless and unsuitable for every other publication and don’t send it anywhere else.
23. Whenever you receive a rejection letter, take it personally and throw your work in the bin.
24. Never ever consider the possibility that, if your work’s written from a different angle, it could be suitable for another market and sold again.
25. And if all that doesn’t make you fail, you can always just give up writing.
Ruth Barringham is a freelance writer and editor of www.writeaholic.co.uk, the website for serious writers who want to get published and get paid not just every month or every week, but every day. Subscribe to Writeaholic News, the free monthly newsletter from Writeaholic.co.uk and receive the free ebook, ‘Become A Freelance Writing Success’.