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Write More - Time Management For Writers

May 25, 2008
Want to write more? You can, even if you think you have "no time." Many writers write a book a year, in 20-minute sessions. Everyone has 20 minutes a day.

In this article, we'll discover how you can make every writing minute count, so you can write whatever you want to write. You may well be surprised that you have much more time than you think you do.

So let's assume that out of your busy life, you can carve 20 minutes a day for your writing. During those 20 minutes, you won't browse news or shopping sites, or read your email: you'll write.

Here are three tips to ensure that you do.

1. Set Process Goals, Because You Have Control of Them

You're in control of your own writing process, so if you set process goals, you're always assured of meeting them. A process goal may be to write an article a day, or 500 words of your novel, or a post on your blog.

You'll have other goals for your writing of course, like getting published in Magazine X, or whatever, and you'll need to map a path to achieving those goals.

However, unless you set and achieve your process goals, you won't have any product to send to an agent or publisher, so those other goals are moot.

For many years I had a process goal of writing 1000 words a day. That became a habit, and although it's no longer one of my process goals, I nevertheless scan my diary each evening and mentally tally up the number of words I've written that day.

So start today and set just one process goal, and decide that you'll achieve it every day. Before you know it, that goal will be as much a part of you as every other habit you have, and you'll be amazed at how much you write each week.

2. Writing Is a Process: Plan, Draft, Write

The best writing reads as a smooth mental transmission of ideas and images, but you can safely bet your nest egg on the fact that that the more easily a piece of writing reads, the more time went into its construction.

Writing is messy and chaotic; it's a process consisting of planning, drafting, and finally writing. Most of my writing starts off as a mind map or cluster diagram. Then I write a very fast and careless draft. Finally I chop the draft to pieces and write a "first draft." Depending on what the project is, that draft may be the first one of many.

So use strategies like mind maps and index cards to plan your writing, and write drafts quickly. All writing is a process of discovery. The more you think on the page, the more writing you'll do.

3. "Writing Time" Is Your Time - Close the Door, or Wear Headphones

If you write at home, close your office door. Make it clear to everyone in the house that your writing time is your time. If you don't have an office at home, wear headphones.

Alternatively, write in a coffee shop, or in your car before you get home. You'll find that your family, friends and colleagues will take your writing as seriously, if you do.

I hope I've inspired you to use just 20 minutes a day, and write. You can do it - start today.
About the Author
Want to write more ? Angela Booth's writing class, "Write More And Make More Money From Your Writing: Develop A Fast, Fun Productive Writing Process" is based on lessons she developed for her private coaching students.

Her ebook "Top 70 Writing Tips To Help You To Write More" shows you how to end procrastination for good and write more.
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