One Productivity Hack for Writers (also useful elsewhere in life)

by Vanna on November 29, 2011

I’ve recently been spending a lot of time on the question of how to improve my writing discipline and overall productivity (both as a writer, but also in other areas of my life). The one main realization that I have arrived at by this point is just how true the statement: “What must be done is not difficult to do” really is.

Applied to writing, this basically translates to: “If you really desire to finish your book/story/series, you will be able to do so easily.” Or it will seem easy.

This is nothing new of course, but sometimes it helps to have things spelled out and universal truths turned in a way that is applicable to a concrete situation. At least it helps me.

However, as great as eye-opening realizations and gaining perspective is, there is still the practical aspect of it all to be considered. Which brigs me to the productivity hack (which is not novel either)….

To get more writing done, simply allot a set amount of time to the task. During his time do nothing, but focus entirely on finishing the task at hand. It is best to do this in intervals. For example, work for 30 minutes and take a break for 5 minutes. Set a timer with a bell to let you know when each interval is completed.

During the 30 minutes only work on your manuscript. During the break, relax. Do as many of these sessions as you can fit into your schedule.

Does it sound familiar?

It’s really just an adaptation on how school works. Remember how we had those lessons for 40 or 45 minutes and then the break during which we had to get to the next lesson. And during the 45 minutes, we were forced to only concentrate on the subject at hand.

Well, if it worked then, and continues to work at schools across the globe, it can work for the writer too. I find it a very useful way to avoid distractions and get more writing done.

In fact, I will go use this technique right now to get a revised version version of the prologue to Protector done.

What about you? Do you have any tips on how to get more writing done to share?

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