LET'S FACE IT -- we're all busy. We all have responsibilities that require chunks of our time and, more often than not, that time slowly depletes throughout the day.
Sound familiar at all?
With the best of intentions, it's super easy to neglect your projects. "Tomorrow will be better," you tell yourself. "I'll power through it then." And tomorrow, you're just as busy. The next day doesn't look good either.
Before you know it, your project is collecting dust.
Let me tell you something that will make things crystal clear:
If you don't make the time to write, then you won't write. No one else is going to do it for you.
So, how important is your project to you?
If you're still with me, then I salute you. More power to you! Let's see how you can make the best of your time and make your writing a priority in your life.
(Okay, if you nodded just then, move onto method two... And remind me not to tick you off.)
(Sounds good, right?)
For example, if you get up in the morning and watch an hour of TV over breakfast, try using that golden hour to jot some ideas down, work on a short story, contribute to the latest chapter of your novel... Your options here are endless. Yes, you may enjoy vegging out in the morning to your favourite programme, but do you need to do it every morning? Compromise. Mix your week up a bit.
And you don't have to be a morning person to make this work for you. Limit your Facebook time and use the extra to be productive. Use online shopping as a reward, not a distraction.
Focus on your immediate task. Try not to let your every whim and impulse control you.
Don't want to give anything up in order to write? That's fine too. You just need to be a little more disciplined, my friend.
What are yours? Record your activity for a week. When are you most productive? Is there a pattern? If you discover your optimum time to write, protect it fiercely (where humanly possible). These are your initial go to writing times.
(You've made your point. Now, get on with the method!)
Carry a note pad around with you wherever you go. It doesn't have to be big, it can be handbag sized, or even shirt pocket sized. And whatever you do, don't forget to carry a good pen, too. These are your basic writer's on-the-go tools, perfect for unplanned moments of productivity and brilliant bursts of inspiration.
You can also use your phone or tablet, if gadgets are more your style. Writing with a phone can be fiddly for longer paragraphs, but speaking them is easy. There are two ways you can do this:
Both of these methods can be effectively used in a hurry. They're also good for those chaotic moments when your hand struggles to keep up with your epic imagination.
As for the reams of notes you may have made on your project, well... I know what you're thinking. Why should I carry them around with me all day, you say? After all, you may not even get to use them. Fear not, dear writers. You can carry them around with you without breaking your back.
(I'm going to go ahead and assume you have a mobile phone with a camera. If you don't, I apologise. But you really are missing out!)
Take a picture of all important notes and keep them stored in their own folder. This way, you'll have ready access to everything you need to pick up where you last left off. You can also email yourself typed notes, or carry them on a memory stick.
I hope you found something useful in all that. You can use all of these methods to make time for your writing projects, or just pick the one that suits you best. Maybe you have a better idea. In any case, I'd love to know what works for you.
There is one thing of which I'm absolutely certain -- writers write.
Author of short fiction and journals for writers.