Schedule for Busy Writers

A very few writers have the opportunity to regularly write all day in pajamas. We all have our lives and things keeping us from writing our books. But how to work on your writing while you cannot take few a week-long breaks?

Insist on your routine

No one is going to do your job. You have to work regularly and often to achieve something. Even when your life is already packed with duties and deadlines, look at your days as they pass and identify the moments when you can sit down and work on your writing, marketing, research, more writing…
Make it clear you take writing seriously. Inform your family you need this time and ask them to respect that and give you this space. Consider giving up some other hobbies if you love writing. Consider whether you are able to get up earlier or go to bed later.

Have one place to take notes

An idea can ram into your head at any moment. And you can be sure to forget most of the new material once you drop dead at the end of the day. That is why it is useful to carry a special small paper notebook or have a document on your phone just for your random writing notes. Keep this close all the time and write down your ideas whether you wake up in the middle of the night, or you are waiting in the shop.

Set small goals

As Tahani said in her story about how she became a successful indie author, one of the keys is to set a small wordcount to write each day. 200 words? 500? It may seem small, but fulfilling this goal will keep you motivated and in motion. And you may find you usually write much more than your set minimum. Divide also the other writing commitments. Spend 15-30 minutes a day working on your social media. Watch two or three research videos a week… Whatever you need, do it step by step. Small and frequent steps.

And do not forget to set also a writing free day in your week. Or some other short writing vacations to clear your mind.

Be creative with opportunities

You can type while on the train or bus. You can listen to your manuscript while walking or shopping. Use a rush through the street to notice some interesting character or plot ideas. Inspiration is all around us and so are the opportunities to make your book better and reach the next paragraph.
Carry your work in your head and try to plan forward. Plan what you are going to write today, visualize the scenes while waiting somewhere. Let your characters have a free dialogue in your head as you rush from work…

Forgive yourself

No matter how carefully you plan ahead. Life happens. Unexpected work duties can overwhelm you. Your child wakes up at 1:30 with a fever. You have to travel, or a storm cuts your electricity… Yes, do make plans and try to fulfill them, even do more than that. But accept that sometimes writing is not meant to be.

6 thoughts on “Schedule for Busy Writers

  1. I LIVE by the small goals theory, and not just for writing, but everything else in life. Run ten minutes? Memorise two new Chinese words? Read one page? It’s the consistency that builds an unstoppable habit, not the intensity, and I appreciate you mentioning that in this great article. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sometimes it is beneficial to step back from a writing project. Even the ritual of writing so many words a day. A need to remember that to be in tune with the environment we live in and communicate with those around, where understanding and appreciation is needed, Focus, is also important and where a publication is near, then overmuch routine will hinder completion. Many of the tips given, translate well for those who are disorganized and need regime like structure. The muse that arrives to open doors into imaginative and creative writing, can be no respecter of formula and routine process.


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