Sunday, July 29, 2012

Writing Routine - a must have.

Writing isn't a 9-5 job. It's a job you have to be doing all the time and some days, you just don't feel like it or your creative juices are just not flowing and you end up staring at the computer screen. But if you are not disciplined enough to write on a regular basis, you're not going to get very far. Plus there are all those distractions, social medias, things to do around your house, other jobs, giant dogs that think they are lap dogs. You have to be discipline enough to tell that giant dog to go lay down.

And just because you have this great idea, you just can't put it down on paper in a few days. It takes a lot of time, a lot of days, even if you are talented and awesome enough to have very detail already thought out, putting it down takes time. Your fingers can only move so fast.

So what does this mean besides a little bit of insanity? It means discipline. Which leads me to the point of this post - a routine. I have found that setting a routine has got me farther than anything that I have done. Mind you goal setting was super helpful to me - I did ROW80 and I got a huge increase in my word count because I felt guilty if I didn't meet my goal, but I would scramble the night before to hit my goal. It was very intense.  So from there, I have goals, which is helpful, but I put more emphasis on the routine of writing.

Currently, I meet my friend Joe every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday morning at 9 at a local library. We show up, have some chit chat, and dive in. We stay between 2 to 3 hours each time. This is where we sit. It's our spot. I would be very disoriented if anyone ever sits there.

It gets me in the mind set. I do my best work in the morning. There are few distractions. I normally can bust out between 2 to 3 thousand words at this time. Now this isn't the only writing I do either. It's just the set time that I had. I typically write every day. But when I walk into the library, I'm there to work. And I do. I feel accomplished and when I leave, my mind is working about the story, and I typically come home and write some

This routine all started in January. Joe and I decided to meet on a Saturday after another Saturday I had spent at this library. I was completing my National Board Certification and got so much work done because there were no distractions. We decided to try it. So during the school year, we meet on Saturdays. It's our time to write. And this summer we upped the days because we could.

Another tip that I have that has made me more productive. Before I start, I check all my social medias, send out any pressing emails, play one round of Words with Friends, set up my playlist, and then start. I find that I don't feel the pressing urge to check everything. I just checked. If someone desperately needs me, they'll call me.

What is your writing routine? Any tips to lessen distractions? Let's hear it!


  1. I love your writing routine, Michelle! I wish I had something as organized and awesome. My routine is mostly, turning on whatever playlist I'm writing to, and keeping away distractions ( like email, etc). I miss having a writing partner!

    1. Thanks Molli! We could set something up though! We could pick once a week and we could be online writing buddies or we could do something where we hold each accountable for setting goals and completing them!!! Just some thoughts, LMK what you think!