Summertime, and the allure of the outdoors beckoning our attention and keeping us from writing. Ordinarily, it’s difficult to stay motivated, but even more so, when the distraction of summertime fun is more inviting. So, how can I fit writing time into my day?” I begin it with this question and end it in assessing if, indeed, I did fit it in. Recently, I reviewed my week to see how I did this and came up with these five ways to integrate writing into the day.
*Think of the day in terms of segments. I segment my day based on my work: volunteer, paid job, and writing. Considering your day in smaller, blocks of time is less overwhelming. The time segments, rather than total hours of the day, make it easier to juggle your to-do’s. When I get to the writing work, I’m less distracted and more focused. I am motivated knowing I have a block of time, not the whole day, ready and waiting for me to fill.
*Choose your writing time when it is the strongest. My writing is the strongest in later afternoon so I schedule my priority writing tasks–readying a piece for submission, edits and rewrites of my manuscript–at that time because I know I’m more productive. Whether you need to schedule your writing time early in the morning before your house wakes up or after the house is asleep, write when you know you feel strong about your writing.
*Prioritize. I’m usually juggling a few writing projects and instead of trying to get them all completed at the same time, focus on prioritizing them. For example, I attend first to projects with submission deadlines, giving me plenty of lead time to create my best work. Second on the list is my manuscript. I consider it a close family member so I want to visit and nurture it often. Writing priorities keep me motivated to “get to it” and write.
*Vary writing interests. I blog, write short memoir pieces, op/ed essay for my local paper, comment on other blogs, record ideas for possible second book. I generate more interest in writing the more I write for different purposes, keeping me motivated.
*Read anything you can get your hands on. I read a lot so its habit for me to pick up an article I find curious. For example, I read a study in a trade journal of nursing practices as applied to the LGBT community. (I volunteer at a skilled nursing/rehab center). This study sparked thoughts of my own experiences working with others who are different from me yet I realized how much we were the same. What a life lesson to write about! Keeping well-rounded in your reading encourages more writing, increasing your motivation.
If you can learn to do any of the suggestions, you can stay motivated to inspire you to create your best work yet.