Something is always going to get between you and writing. Work. Family. Sports. Television. Social media. Reading. Laundry.
If you don’t make writing a priority, it’s going to be ousted from your day. I’m not saying it needs to be your top priority but you need to be intentional about carving time for word crafting. Even if it’s 15 minutes.
1. Dessert first.
If you’re juggling multiple pieces, pick your favorite or the one you can crank out the fastest first. You’ll feel accomplished right away, and it’ll give you the momentum to keep going.
If you’ve only got one piece you’re working on, don’t be afraid to write out of order. Whenever I say this, writers worry about scenes not fitting back together. It does happen but sometimes a scene needs to be written just so you can learn more about the character not because it’ll end up in the book.
2. Know yourself.
For some people, their most productive writing time is the early morning. For others, afternoon. Personally, I have a hard time writing before the moon rises.
Know what time of day works best for you and do your best to protect that time. Mark it as a meeting on your calendar if you need to. Only let emergencies come between you and your sacred writing time.
3. Make it a game.
There’s the basic version: set the timer and write until the timer goes off.
And there are more complex versions: how many words can you get down before the water boils? How developed will the scene be when the laundry needs to be switched? How much can you accomplish before nature calls?
4. Master the art of being productive without really trying.
Learn how to write when you’re vacuuming, driving, and weeding. If your characters have permission to come out and play even if there’s no pencil nearby, they will use that to their full advantage.
It’s a great idea to find a notebook that fits in your pocket or a stack of Post-its on your desk, kitchen counter, and beside table. There are even marker boards that can be used in the shower. If you’re driving, utilize the voice-record feature on your phone.
How do you find writing time?
For fifteen minutes (set the timer) write a story using only three to five word sentences.