You’re a student. Maybe you’ve got a job. You’ve definitely got chores. Are you struggling to schedule time for writing in your hectic day? Do you find yourself staying up late at night to finish your daily word count?
Then this post is for you.
You guys know how much I like organization and planning. If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times — organization will set you free. So, let’s look at some ways that we can incorporate organization to help us carve more writing time out of our schedule.
GET A PLANNER
Seriously, these things are awesome. It can be an app, a regular planner, or just a binder full of printables. The purpose of a planner is to make sure that you know when, where, and what goes on in your day. This will make your time an effective asset, and you can see how much free time you have in your day.
Good thing to have.
SCHEDULE & COMPLETE
Again, another “seriously” moment. Just set a time for it to get done and then get it done. Put in place a zero tolerance policy in your schedule. You’ll be a happier writer because of it.
How does this affect your writing, you ask? Well, if you finish your tasks on time, hopefully, your schedule will be open for more writing. Simple, right? ‘Cause it is!
KNOW WHAT YOU’RE WRITING
All you pantsers out there, don’t hate me yet. Hear me out on this one.
You’ve got a limited time-frame. Don’t spend that time staring at a blank screen with a blank mind. (Or worse, a screen filled with words, but a blank mind.) Plan out your writing session beforehand, and those situations — poof! Gone with the wind. Your writing plan doesn’t have to be a detailed, blow-by-blow account of your next scene. It can be a one-sentence prompt, a single word, or even a doodle.
All you need is something to inspire you.
But, don’t think that you can keep all that awesome writing-planning stuff inside your head. If you’re one of those people who can remember things like an elephant, congratulations! If you’re not, well, you’re not alone. So, write down your outline. That way, you’ll have a reference for your writing session.
SET A TIMER
If you have a lot of projects going, (and who doesn’t?), setting a timer will help you keep track of the time you’re spending. And how much time you have left. Getting so wrapped up in a project that you lose track of time is not a good thing when you have several projects going.
So, set a timer for 15 or 30 minutes. Once that time is up, switch to another project. Rinse. Repeat.
This method also keeps you from getting bored. That’s a good thing, right?
With the wide availability of mobile devices, and since writers have such ingenuity, you can write anywhere. Take advantage of this. Write anywhere and everywhere.
Write during lunch. Write while you wait in line, write while you’re watching television, and write while you’re a passenger in a car. You can use a mini-notebook, an app on your phone, or a bunch of napkins.
So, how do you write on a busy schedule?
Read more posts in this series:
- How to be a Writer (Part One): how to start writing
- How to be a Writer (Part Three): are you a plotter or a pantser? + writing resources
- How to be a Writer (Part Four): how to write when you’re not inspired