One of my goals was to spent January – March writing the first draft of my new novel. That meant 1000 words a day.
Have I done that so far?
I mean, I’ve done some writing. But I’m not at 22,000 words. No where near. I haven’t even done 4,000 words.
So, you know, the writing goals are going well so far.
How about you?
How are you writing resolutions and goals going?
I wanted to share some productivity tips with you today.
You know, because I’m obviously so on top of everything.
Okay, so knowing how to be productive and actually being productive are two very different things. One is an understanding but the other is action, and action can often be so difficult (especially when you have a puppy demanding attention all the time – who, by the way, just stole my welly and ripped a piece off even though he has his own chew toys).
So, how about a few productivity tips AND how to action them?
Here we go.
- Schedule in procrastination time.
We all need to procrastinate, especially as writers. It’s time to think, for our brains to work out those plot problems. Plus it’s really hard to stop procrastinating. So rather than fight it, build it into your schedule. Allow yourself time to avoid doing work and daydream instead. New ideas will hit you and you’ll be writing away before you know it.
- Be realistic.
Don’t say you’re going to write 2,000 words a day if you actually only have 15 minutes spare each day. Instead, work out how much time you have to give to your writing and then write during that time. Maybe aim for a low minimum, so you have something to aim for on the bad days. But on the good days, let the words flow.
- Carve out the time.
What’s that? You don’t know where you’ll ever find 15 minutes? You can’t wait for time to write if you want to get that story or book written, you have to make time. Find a quiet corner of the house and shut out the family, or pop down your local coffee shop on your way home from work or take your writing to work and plough through on your lunch break. Your brain will get used to whatever time you carve out and soon the words will come.
And now, how to put those into action
- Tell your family.
Let them know your intentions and make sure they leave you alone at the allotted time. Or ask them to do what my mum does:
‘Hey, on Saturday you can tell me how your new book is coming!’
Err, yeah… I best get writing!
- Reward yourself afterwards.
When you hit your word goal for the day, reward yourself! It can be anything that will make you happy. A slice of cake, or a little tipple, or half an hour of lounging around watching your favourite TV show. Or maybe a night out with your mates, or cinema tickets. Whatever works for you. Build yourself appropriate rewards for each thing you can achieve, meeting your daily word goal, your weekly word goal, and finishing that first draft.
- Try my new Habit Tracker.
Keep track of what days you hit your daily word target or just get words written with my new Habit Tracker for 2018. You can also use it for any other habit or behaviour you’d like to shape this year. The satisfaction of colouring in squares on the days you write is a wonderful thing. You can get your tracker now for under £2 (those stupid VAT rules mean I don’t actually know quite what price you’ll be given).
Okay, well, I’m now being barked at. So I guess that’s all I have time for today!
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