Sometimes it’s hard to get your writing habits in check and maintain some discipline when it comes to working on your project(s). I am working on implementing some ways to get more organized in my writing that I wanted to share with you guys today because I know that this is something that a lot of writers struggle with. In particular writers who have not yet found their groove, so to speak.
I do have to admit that I have yet to master a couple of these (at least not for extended period of time) and I am still working on some of these suggestions myself. However, I thought that we writers all need to stick together so I hope that some of these suggestions can not only be good for me but that they can help some of you out there as well.
- Hold Regular Meetings with Yourself—Your writing is a business and you are the CEO of that business. You may not have the office, with the proper support staff (or you may) but you still have to hold the meetings and check in with yourself on where you are in reaching those goals that you are hopefully setting periodically. They can be weekly, bi-weekly, or even monthly, but they do need to happen.
- Work on Multi-Tasking with Your Writing Projects— It used to be frowned upon to work on more than one project at a time. It was looked at as if you were throwing in the towel on the one project just to go start (and probably not finish) another one. However, times have changed and sometime when the inspiration is going dry on one project, rather than continuing at something that isn’t working in that moment, there is no reason to let the other ideas that might be filling up your brain (and your notepad) go to waste. Start another project and perhaps getting fired up for the new project can reignite some old inspiration for the other one.
- Prepare Your Writing Projects in Detail— Another way to not get stuck in that “how do I start this” rut or that “I’ve got one chapter down but I don’t know where else to go with this” dilemma, is to outline your project or at least jot down the important story plots that you want to cover within your book. Having a guide map of where to go in your story doesn’t mean that you have to absolutely stick to that guide but it does help you to not get stuck wondering what will come next in the story and it will keep you from having to backtrack and try to recount minor details that you’ve already written when you forget what they are because chances are your readers will know when one detail doesn’t match the other.
- Evaluate All of Your Time Wasters— You don’t have to give up all of your T.V. time, and you don’t have to never see another movie again but you do have to make your writing time matter more than that television show that you think you just can’t miss. Most people have cable now, and with that they typically have a DVR, so record the T.V. shows that you can’t miss and watch them later in your down time. But your writing time is precious and should not have to compete with the T.V. or the internet, or that phone call that you know you can make later. Don’t let your writing time go to waste.
- Keep All of Your Eggs in Their Own Baskets— Now while it is perfectly okay to work on multiple projects at a time (not too many though) you do want to make sure that you don’t blur the lines between the projects. You can’t work on two projects at the exact same time period because the back and forth between the two projects would drive you crazy. Set a time to work on each project individually and separate from the others. (For example, in the morning time you work on project A, a little time in the afternoon for project B, and if you have a third project then perhaps you can devote some time in the evening for project C.)
- Schedule the Down Time that You Know You Are Going to Need— Writing is not easy and if you are working on something personal to you it can be extremely emotional. If you are working on the business side of your writing career it can become quite taxing so you have to remember to take some time to do something for yourself that has absolutely nothing to do with writing. Go see a movie, get your nails done, take a spa day, go work out at the gym, take a mini-vacation or even a long one if you’ve just finished up a big project. Do something that you enjoy and that is going to give you a sense of calm so that your mind can be refreshed when it’s time to jump back into your writing project(s).
Hopefully some of the writers out there can put this into practice for yourselves and perhaps you have even more suggestions that you can add to this list that you can share with me and the rest of the readers here. Happy writing everyone!
The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)
Writing as “Jaycee Durant”
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