I had another moderately successful week. I was able to meet my goal five out of seven days, which isn’t all that bad. But with a big deadline looming it doesn’t feel like enough. I even took a day off of my Evil Day Job to get more work done, which is completely unlike me (can you say workaholic :P).
However I have new hope for getting this WIP done. This week I saw the light, that dazzling light that shows you to the end of the story, past whatever’s blocking you. I can now see it all. I know I can write it, I can see the whole path. All I have to do is make the time.
There are a few things I learned this week that have helped in my productivity.
1. Take breaks. I’m known for working for hours straight. At the EDJ I put my head down and work for hours without anyone even looking my way. I can do that in my writing as well, but it’s not the most productive. I found when I knew I’d be working only a certain amount of time, be it an hour, a half hour, whatever…I pushed through and actually ended up writing more.
The best way I found to force myself to take breaks is by watching television. I always watch TV or a movie while I write. As an alarm I'd watch an hour long television show, and push through for that hour, not allowing myself to get distracted by anything during that time. Then when it was done I took a break to do anything else I needed. I got up and went to the bathroom, got a snack, feed my fur babies. By doing this I could be more productive in the same amount of time, which means I can write overall to make my deadline.
If you don’t watch TV while you work, you could also create a playlist and make sure once you listen to it all the way through take a break, or if you write without any sound you could set an alarm.
2. Set small goals. The calendar method didn’t work for me because the amounts were just too large. It was overwhelming to see how much I needed to write each day. But when I’m actually writing, if I focus on just getting the next hundred words done it moves much smoother. And I didn’t become overwhelmed.
The trick for the next week will be learning how to fit in as much writing into those little times in the day as I can, lunch breaks, waiting in line, the drive home, etc... I don’t know that I can afford to take another day off to finish up this work. But the deadline isn’t going to change, so I need to make it work in the time I have.
Check back next week to hear my progress. And hopefully I’ll have news on Midnight Mirage
by then too. Stay tuned…