Writing Schedules

Someone in one of the email lists I frequent asked how to schedule writing time. Here is what I said:

Here’s Little Miss Echo, chiming in with the others: Have you tried writing yet, or are you just looking over the possibility? I don’t mean that to sound snotty, so I have to make that clear, because you can’t see the good will and eagerness on my face as I ask. 🙂

The reason for asking is, if you’ve tried writing already and are frustrated with an inability to get anything done or to get anything started, what times/methods have you used? and, if you haven’t tried already, go ahead and try.

A voice recorder or even a notebook and pen are great for jotting down notes before and during a project. You can do that in any snatch of free time: waiting for a bus, at a stop light, alone at a lunch table, between homework assignments.

When you start putting things together, and if you need chunks of time, try different times: set your alarm and get up earlier than usual, if you’re a morning person. Try between classes. Try after classes. Try staying up later than usual. Whenever that creative energy flows, that’s your writing time. Some people really CAN write in 15-minute bursts! I can, though I prefer longer chunks.

One thing I’ve found immensely helpful is to set a goal. The person who suggested this suggested a short goal, and it works beautifully for me. When I’m working, I set a goal of 250 words a day. I mean, I can write 250 words in no time! If I can do 250 words a day, I’ve met my writing goal for the day, and I get rights to feel virtuous and productive. If I write more than 250 words in a day, I get to feel triumphant and All That. If I fail to write 250 words, well, that’s not much of a failure, and I can live with that. lol!

WRITING PROMPT: Write a character who is frustrated with not enough time for a project he/she wants to at least work on, preferably to complete. How does he/she deal with the frustration? Does he/she find a solution, or come to terms with an impossibility or what?


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I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Writing Schedules

  1. Jan Kessinger

    October 5, 2010 at 2:54pm

    I’m just starting to write, and your suggestions have been so helpful. Thank you, Marian! I so enjoy your blog!

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