Well, technically, yesterday was the halfway point for this Round of Words. That means we’re already heading to the homestretch. Time to start think, even in just a bit here and there, about what you might want to change or try out in Round 2.
Today though I want to ask you all about time. How much time are you all spending on your writing? Do you think it’s enough, not enough…. too much and it’s begun to take over your life?
I can hope you’ve found a sweet spot (I haven’t yet), and well… if you’re struggling with characters who demand all of your time and attention 24/7, I can only suggest diversions of chocolate and bubble baths. Sorry.
I CAN offer some consolation for those who feel they aren’t spending enough time on their writing. Little bits add up… You don’t need to block out a huge expanse of your day for writing to make serious progress. I’ve mentioned the 10 Minute Novelists group before. There used to be a great little site called The One Minute Writer that proved to me how much one could accomplish in just 60 seconds (the link goes to the Internet Archive version of the site). Add a moment or two of planning while exercising or washing the dishes… YES, you can be ‘writing’ while cleaning your desk, sharpening your pencils or getting your groove on with some of your favorite music! When you work in smaller blocks of time, sometimes you actually do more than if you try to cram all your writing time into a large block.
But what happens with all these little disjointed bits and pieces you might wonder? Well, sometimes they are disjointed, but often your mind will be working on the story while you’re not putting words on the paper too. Your mind is still writing, still adding ideas and subtext to the story, and it will help put those together for you the next time you put the words down.
It’s a bit like ‘sleeping on an idea’ but you’re able to get other things done too. Win win.
As the song says, “If two become one, what is the one the two become?” What can you create in small bursts? What will the combination of your mind and your busy schedule come up with?
Just a quick check-in for Sunday… and a welcome to those ROWers who’ve jumped in to our challenge a bit late. I
It’s okay. If you’re thinking of joining us but don’t feel comfortable starting late, don’t… don’t feel uncomfortable that is. We’d love to have you. Just post your goals in the comments of the new check-in (or at the goals post linky), and you’re in. That’s all there is to it.
Well, that and writing…. This is a writing challenge after all.
And speaking of writing, for those of you who’ve been ROWing all week, how’d you do? If you were having trouble getting started, did you find yourself procrastinating on key steps, gathering resources, cleaning, catching up with social media? Don’t despair. There’s research out there that says procrastinating can be good for your creativity. You may need to spend some more time contemplating your projects and this procrastination is your brain telling you that.
You can’t procrastinate forever though. So if you’re just having trouble getting started… maybe some of these ideas will help?
Let us know how you’re doing in the comments or in our Facebook group.
Well, perhaps it’s not morning where you are… it’s not really morning still here either. So that’s “OK”. We’re live now.
Today is the first day of Round 1, 2019. A new day, a new year, new words, new commitments, new ideas… are you ready? Our first check-in comes up Wednesday.
Now, many of you have posted your goals for this round of words (I haven’t… just like this post, I’m running bit off schedule). If you haven’t yet, feel free to go ahead and do so now. The linky and the post will remain active for another few weeks.
If you aren’t sure of where to start and what to do, well, here’s a good place…
Seriously, start writing. Start creating. Or, in the words of my husband, “Do anything, even if it’s wrong.” You can toss out a page of crappy first draft words, you can edit them, you can save and frame them as a memorial to the moment you decided to BE a writer instead of dreaming of one.
Yes, you did read that right. We’re heading into another year of the ROW80, the Writing Challenge that knows you have a life. That’s eight years of words, creativity, community, support, even friendships… It’s been a wild ride, and we’ve changed, evolved, grown, shrunk, and rebuilt the engine a few times along the way.
What we’ve always done is set goals and support each other as we progress toward achieving those goals.
Which comes to today’s post… the super-popular Goals Post! (you have been waiting for it with abated breath, right? 😉 )
Setting goals these days might seem daunting. We’re already so very busy. It’s not the goals… we know where we want to be in by the end of 80 Days (usually), but the “How do I get there?” can overwhelm us. We can know all about setting S.M.A.R.T. goals, we can even have some great goals and strategies in mind, but we just-don’t-start.
Goals do us no good when we procrastinate and devote our energy towards things that don’t help us achieve them. So.. may this, along with the links above, give you the tools and the determination to make Round 1 the start of a great new year of creativity.
Because you may wish to refer back to your goals throughout the round, I suggest you leave a link on the linky. But as always, you can leave a comment or post in our FB group.
Apologies for not getting over to visit your blogs, ROWers. It’s been a challenging couple of days. I’ll be making my rounds a bit late, but I’m already buoyed by all the progress I’ve seen mentioned in the comments. Yes! Rowers Rule!
Short check-in, here… as I said, a challenging (not bad, just challenging) couple of days. Hope you all are having a great half-week. Let us know in the comments or at our FB page.
Oh, and a small PS here: Will be announcing plans for the next Round of Words (officially starts on the 31st, but we’ll be doing our first check-in on Jan 2), this Sunday. If you have any ideas or suggestions for things you’d like to have us do, let me know. And have a great week of creativity.
As we get deeper into the holiday season here at the ROW80, some people might be thinking they will have to set aside their aspirations to publish or create to make time for family gatherings, gift shopping, office parties, cooking… Basically, when it comes to writing excuses, it’s far easier to come up with some than it probably should be.
One of those that comes up frequently is “I don’t have time to write.” This really is an excuse, and here’s an example of why:
A recent discussion in our local NaNoWriMo group involved writer’s block and wordcount on a busy schedule. Shan (our FB page maven) mentioned a method she uses to get writing when she’s feeling stuck is to use “teeny-tiny little sprints: 1:11, 2:22, or 3:33“. That’s not a huge time commitment. (And what better way to get an idea down when you are inspired?)
And the best part? These small bursts pack a huge punch. If you happen to be a Writer’s Digest reader, this December issue had a great piece on the 9-Minute Novelist. Author Jeff Somers does the math for you, from nine minutes a day to write (and revise) up to two novels in a year right on down to the One Minute Writer (an 80K novel in around 4.5 years).