Back to the Basics
Lately, I noticed a theme with the posts. They’ve all been about being stuck and losing motivation. The universe must be trying to tell us something and push us to keep going. And, I’m not sure about you, but knowing that this isn’t just a “me” thing has been helpful.
While some of my roadblocks have been environmental and mental, other parts of it has just been me being lazy and not pushing hard enough. So, I had to do a few things:
Set a schedule. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I had to set a schedule. Now, let’s be honest, have I always stuck to it…No! But, having it there and knowing that I have carved out time helped me to make progress. And when I didn’t stick to my schedule, it helped me to see how much I was letting other things get in the way.
Take out all the distractions. I used to go to a coffeeshop once a week, sit, and write. Life and financial goals don’t allow for that any longer. However, that doesn’t mean I can’t get focused. I don’t write in my room anymore. Well, I did the other night, but I was really reviewing, not writing. I have challenged myself to sit on my sofa or at the dining room table. No TV, no music, no “background noise”. This helps me to try and block out anything that will pull me from the task at hand.
Set small limits and work your way up. So, I start out with a goal of 30 minutes of writing. I found that I’ll usually get into a zone and that 30 minutes turned into an hour!
Find your process. Many writers will outline their storyline, plot, etc. I found that doing that first doesn’t work for me. I don’t know what I’m writing until I write it. I wrote, and rewrote, then I went back and outlined everything that I just wrote! This helped me to find the holes in the plot, questions that needed to be answered, parts that should be moved or eliminated, structural issues. This worked for me, maybe it will for you.
Rejuvenate. I’m still working on this myself. But, slowly I’m learning to take cues from your creativity (or lack thereof) and brain on when it’s time to stop. Take a nap. Go for a walk. Watch some mindless TV. Do something to refill your well.
My list keeps growing as I keep writing and learning my style. But, going back to the fundamental basics of writing helps us create our best work. We just forget to do that sometimes.
What are some basics that you like to put into practice?