Today has been pretty much a bust - over the day yesterday the proto-cold that I think I picked up in Vermont, and lovingly nurtured by not getting enough sleep, has developed into a charming head cold, all concentrated in my sinuses and throat and making me feel wobbly and light-headed. So I've been becoming intimately acquainted with the contents of my DVR (TiVo for my cable system) and (sort of) enjoying a brain-dead day (though I really hope this eases off tomorrow so I can get something done).
I wanted to follow-up to the writing post I made a few days ago (okay, almost a week? Time flies, yadda yadda yadda). I really appreciate everyone's input, and even though people all had fairly different answers, I thought it was interesting that a few themes emerged:
- setting fixed times for writing, either an actual time of day or just a length of time - Nels sets a timer, lucyrain used the length of time her laptop battery lasted, and What Now? wrote until she had accumulated a certain number of words.
- changing location - Laura (Geeky Mom) and Tiruncula talk about going somewhere without distractions.
- doing something to start that gets the creative juices flowing - a bunch of other people, like Dr. B, Dr. M, and Jane, mentioned blogging or other informal writing.
- not getting caught up in whether or not the writing is any good while you're doing it, which Ancarett, Pilgrim/Heretic, and Tiruncula emphasized.
Though I think the prize goes for af for talking about cleaning glasses with post-its.
Recently, I have been using a timer myself, and making a chart of every 30 minutes of sustained work; I set the timer and have to sit and write until the timer goes off, and then I can set it again or decide to do something else. I have found this pretty successful, although it's easier to do at home when I'm sitting at my desk in the dining room and can use the timer on the kitchen stove, than sitting in my office at school. And I've also been heading to a local coffeeshop, or our great public library, when I need to get stuff done; that lack of distractions (like all you wonderful blog people!) is a big thing for me.
I think one of my goals for the next week is to figure out which times during the day I can set aside and devote to writing. Like What Now?, I have a hard time dealing with unstructured time, so I think I need to set some structure for myself.
But before that, I'm looking forward to tonight's shot of what LDH calls green whiskey, AKA NyQuil. I have to get it in liquid form because it tastes so vile, but oh! what a lovely rush after that first hit.
Updated to add: D'oh! I meant also to point everyone to this post about writing, "50 Strategies for Making Yourself Work," which I found via 43 Folders. Think I'll go take some more cold medicine now...