Monday, December 1, 2008

Back on Track: aka New Rules

In November, while everyone else was cranking out a 50,000 word novel, I had a pathetically low word count. Why? Shit happens. More specifically, I spent a lot of time trying to drum up freelance work, I spent a lot of time babysitting, and I let myself get into the “I’ll make up the time tomorrow" mode. Wrong! It’s always today, and there’s never enough time to do anything extra.

So here’s my plan to get back on track:

First, I unsubscribed to half the e-mails I was receiving. Who has time to read all those newsletters? Sorry to those of you who put them out, but I just don’t have time.

I stopped opening e-mails first thing in the morning. In fact, it’s now a rule. No e-mail until I’ve worked on the novel for a few hours. (Unless the e-mail is from an editor/publisher!)

Another rule: No Twitter or FaceBook or reading blogs during writing time. They all have to wait until I move on to freelance work. (This will be the hardest rule to keep!)

I’m going to give longer deadlines for the freelance work I take on, then stick to working in the afternoons and evenings (if needed). Mornings are for writing!

And my husband is going to take our niece to school on one of the mornings she’s here, so I’ll only have one morning each week interrupted by that adventure.

And for balance, I’m adopting a new motto: Experience joy every day. Get up and dance! I do not have to be productive every second of every day… As long as I get my three or four hours of writing done, first thing every day.

8 comments:

Jean Henry Mead said...

Great early New Year's resolution, L.J.,and one I need to follow. Immediately after my blog tour is over, it's writing time from 8-noon and 1-3 everyday except Sunday. I hope I have the resolve to keep on schedule. I agree completely about all the newsletters, email, Facebook, etc.

I look forward to my visit here on Wednesday, Dec. 3, and your interview.

Jean Henry Mead said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Amy Nathan said...

This morning I decided not to read emails before taking kids to school. I always end up rushing through everything. Now I will start when they're gone. Checking just "work" emails will be tough --- I need to BE STRONG.

No Twitter? No Facebook?

I'm sweating!

Helen Ginger said...

Those are fabulous rules, LJ. Very similar to the ones I make ... and consistently break.

I'm going to try again.

Valerie Brooks said...

L.J.--Thanks for reminding me of those rules! I used to follow them until I started marketing my novel four months ago. It's back on track and you get the credit! Plus, with all the marketing online, it's tough to stay focused once you've slipped into cyber space.

Marvin D. Wilson said...

"Experience joy every day. Get up and dance!"

YES!!!

Yes, LJ, that is IT!

Loved this post.

Carrie Runnals said...

L.J. I needed to hear your rules this morning...Facebook, Twitter, and emails are my time sucks,too, but oh so much fun.

Love what you're doing here. Please come visit my author interview site, Words To Mouth.

Oh, and by the way, I'm on Facebook at Carrie Zimmerman Runnals and Twitter: CarrieWTM. But, I'm sure you won't come follow me 'til after the writings done ~ noon? ;-)

Jeff Cutler said...

BALANCE is the key. And not beating yourself up too badly.

I did Nanowrimo for the first time this year. Along with the other 118,000+ participants.

Fortunately, my job is to write - for myself. So I was able to get 50,008 words done in 25 days. At that point I had wrapped it up and am now dreading the editing process.

But even if you're not in the 7500 people who finished this year, you hit the keyboard with the intent to cause imaginations to spark.

Keep it up. Oh, chin up too. Writing is never as fun as we all think it should be. Sometimes it's great. Remember those times and keep pecking.