Where Did Time Go?
This morning I will work on the rewrite of The Jewel. Click here and click there and it’s on the screen. Well, before I get started I should check my email. Ah, several things to respond to here. Hmm. That took longer than expected. Best check on who won the game yesterday. Ah, good the Seahawks. So what is happening in the world? I will just check my news feed. Time!
Where did the time go? I had better work on my rewrite. Well, I do need to write a post for my website. But if I don’t get to that rewrite I will never get it done. Yet, I do need to write that blog. I wonder how many people checked out my website yesterday. It will only take a minute to check Google Analytics. And so it goes.
Time is a gift from God. If you do not manage your time and discipline your time management, you will not get much writing done. You will waste a precious gift. However, disciplining one’s time management is easier said than done. The fella who gets in the way is a “pro” at it—procrastination! Overcoming the pro is a matter of disciplining your discipline until discipline of your time becomes a habit. I know, it sounds like double talk, but that is the way it works.
So, how do I discipline my time? One, I am not a tyrant. I allow for some flexibility. However, in general the first hour of the day is spent reading and reflecting on Scripture, prayer writing, journaling, and he next half hour to forty-five minutes dealing with email, news, analytics, etc. Then I write for an hour and a half to two and a half hours before taking a break to go hiking in the desert. I write two to three hours in the afternoon as well. I rewrite in the morning and work on a new book in the afternoon, or vise versa.
I allow one to one and a half days of my writing time to work on website content. You would be surprised at how many hours goes into writing blogs, prepping pictures, etc. I usually do website content toward the end of the week, unless I have so gotten into my writing and rewriting that I let website content slip. Then I end up working catch-up early in the week.
I mentioned flexibility. There are days I just cannot get my mind in “writing gear.” For some reason the clutch is not functioning properly. When that happens I give myself freedom to work on some “shelf” project, a short story, planning marketing strategy, reading writing related articles, organizing pictures, or perhaps organizing my desk. But I make sure I discipline myself to keep with my time management schedule at least four days out of the week.
The Right Place
In my home office I have a beautiful big roll-top desk. I imagine myself sitting at my desk letting words “roll” from my pen…well, my computer keyboard. However, that seldom works for me. I do most of my writing in a corner booth at our local Carl’s Jr. Weird, but it works for me. At home I have a difficult time focusing my thoughts, my mind wanders. Sitting at my desk I am more prone to do the “flex-time stuff.” My writing time is best spent in the right place, the place that works for me. Of course, what works for me likely will not work for some other writer.
Much of what I write is light fantasy. People-watching stimulates my imagination, which stimulates my writing, and there are a lot of “interesting” people here in Pahrump, NV. Interruptions? Ninety-five percent of the time people leave me to my writing. However, now and then an inquisitive person or fan will stop at my table and want to chat a bit, but that is not entirely bad. If someone merely wants to pass the time of day, I politely let them know I am busy working on a book. They apologize and move on to find a more willing ear.
Importance of Fans
Fans of your writing are tremendously important, not only as readers, but as shadow mentors. You learn from your fans’ feedback. Fans incite you to keep writing. Sometimes an author will second guess themselves. Is my writing really any good? Should I even try to get published? Twice in the past week I had fans tell me that they loved my “mouse” book. “I couldn’t put it down!” Those words of encouragement give me hope for the story—The Jewel—I am presently rewriting. If they love Tales of a Church Mouse I am confident they will like the Jewel.
Speaking of fans, I would appreciate your feedback: questions, comments, your writing stories, how you discipline your time, etc. I look forward to learning from you.
Check out this year’s Christmas story from last week. Have a blest Christmas and a great New Year!