Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Top 10 Writing Tricks

Over the weekend I found myself writing. Nothing spectacular, some stuff for church, which led to some updating of promotional material, which led to even more writing. Who knew?
That very question is of some concern. Since I don't know what sparked this sudden interest in writing, I'm not terribly confident in my ability to recreate it. So here's my top ten techniques for writing consistently.
  1. Tell someone what I'm going to write & when. There's no substitute for accountability.
  2. Set a time related goal. Write for 20 minutes, 3 hours, whatever. Just write for a set length of time.
  3. Set a quantitative goal. Three pages, or 1,000 words. Set a number and write until you hit it, even if you write garbage.
  4. Get jealous. Not usually a good thing, but if a little of the green-eyed monster inspires some good-natured competition, maybe it's not so bad.
  5. For me, it helps to take off my shoes at night. Since my mobility is limited this removes the temptation to get up and put laundry away, etc. Of course, there's still Freecell.
  6. Create rewards. We all know this one. But it's true that reward works better than punishment. Try encouraging yourself to write instead of beating yourself up about it.
  7. Go someplace else. I love my Alphasmart. With my Alphasmart & my journal, I can go anywhere and just write.
  8. Turn off your internal editor. This is a big roadblock for me. My editor is very critical these days. For some reason having stuff like cooking and home & garden shows on helps shut the editor up. I think the background noise distracts him without anything exciting like plot to distract me.
  9. Or turn off the TV. Get rid of all distractions. I've found that a day or weekend retreat of sorts can jump start my writing productivity.
  10. Try reverse psychology. Tell yourself you are not allowed to write until you clean out the closet or garage.


LeAnne Benfield Martin said...

Good tips, Nancy! I'll have to keep these in mind since I'm not getting much done this summer.


LeAnne Benfield Martin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Karen Wingate said...

This is a great list, Nancy. I have one more for you. Get determined. If inner or outer voices are telling you that you can't do it, that you won't finish or this is too difficult, dig in your heels and say, Oh yeah? Let me show you. Ok, at the core, I'm a stubborn person.