I’m always trying to tweak my process to become more productive. On the one hand, I don’t like to work on edits and rough draft of something else at the same time on the same day because it feels like multi-tasking. Why not finish the most close-to-being-ready thing and then move on to the next thing to take your full focus?
At the same time, when I do that, what tends to happen is I will get out of the “writing groove”. So while it can take a lot of time and energy to switch between tasks as one does with multi-tasking, it can sometimes take longer to get into a new groove after it’s gone, particularly with writing.
Chuck Wendig wrote a post that I found inspiring toward this end: How To Push Past The Bullshit And Write that Goddamn Novel: A Very Simple No-Fuckery Writing Plan To Get Shit Done
From the very beginning I knew that this was going to be great because anybody who says No-Fuckery is someone I feel I ought to listen to just on principle.
I had previously tried a 250 words a day writing goal. The idea was to JUST START and even if you JUST do the 250, you’ve got some word count down and you started and if you write more awesome, and it adds up over time. It’s like stealing your novel through fifteen minutes here or there. And while it can take that long to even get into a groove, period, if you do it every day, the time it takes to get into the groove is much shorter.
So, I figure… even while I’m editing, there is a burnout point. There is a point at which I’m not going to edit any more that day. I’m going to do a certain amount generally and then the rest of my time for that day is my time. So, in THAT OTHER TIME, the non-editing time… I can’t carve out 15 minutes to work on my WIP? REALLY???
One of my excuses is that I have to outline/plan a book and that’s hard to do while also editing a book. But I have a WIP in progress right now that I can chip away at. Yes, in the long run it’s going to need to percolate some because I’m a little burnt out on that pen name and I need to get back to Zoe and write Hadrian and Angeline’s book but still… chipping away at it while I work on edits for the other book and then planning for Hadrian and Angeline is forward momentum. And that’s what I need. Forward momentum.
So 350 words a day. Anybody can do that.