There are some bits of writing advice that make me go “hmm” and this is one of them. For one thing I mistrust any advise that is couched in absolutes. Write EVERY day. That’s an absolute. Any advice like that should be taken with a bucket of salt, because of the assumption that it a) works for everyone and b) is the only way that works.
Why it’s bad
1) There are too many exceptions. Because many very good and successful writers don’t do it and they do just fine, so they immediately contradict the idea that it’s the only way to be a writer.
2) It’s guilt inducing. Guilt is generally a useless burden. Thinking “Oh no, I didn’t write all week, I need to get my act together.” might be helpful. Thinking “Oh no, I didn’t write today, I’m a failure as a writer!” is not. Especially if on the previous few days the writer did 10,000 words.
3) It’s elitist and possibly sexist to boot. Oh wouldn’t it be lovely if we could all schedule big blocks of time, close the door on interruptions and go to our mind palace to work on the novel. Clearly the people who advise writers to do this think writers don’t have children to take care of, or don’t have a day job. Most writers — and I’d venture especially women writers — are working around a busy life to get their books done. The fact they get novels finished at all is something to admire and they don’t deserve to be made to feel bad because they missed a couple of days writing because their kids were ill, or they had to work late at the day job, or they were just plain knackered.
4) It ignores the fact everyone is different. Some people like the discipline of daily writing sessions. They work steadily on their books. Deadlines hold few terrors for them. They know they can get the work done. On the other hand some people do — gasp — wait for inspiration. And as long as they get the work done, then who cares? Does the reader know or care if the book was finished at a steady 1,500 words a day, or in a frenzy of words with an eye on the clock?
So that’s what I think of write every day. Don’t, unless doing so works for you. Writers gotta write, certainly. You’ve got to produce the work. But how you’re going to do it is something you’ve got to work out according to what suits you. Writing advice that implies you are not a proper writer if you don’t do it their way needs to be judged warily. In my opinion the best writing advice is never prescriptive, but presented as “this works for me, you might want to try it. If it doesn’t work, try something else.”