Well… it’s that time.
Let’s get ourselves together and write all the words. Here’s a break down of your first week. Don’t worry that Monday and Tuesday have already passed. Start today. See where you can get.
FIRST THINGS FIRST: MORNING PAGES
MORNING PAGES sound very complicated and writerly, but it is a really simple concept.
On your writing days, or every day if you’re ambitious, when it’s time to sit down and write, write or type out all the thoughts in your head. All of them.
Even if you start with a curse word.
Even if you start with “I don’t know what to write.”
What you will find almost immediately, is that this “primes your pump” and gets the words flowing. Don’t worry if you don’t know what to do with your words. Don’t worry if you don’t know where to put them. These are for your eyes only, though they can certainly be the inspiration or basis for something else.
My MORNING PAGES yesterday morning became this blog post.
SECOND: YOU MUST PREP YOUR SPACE
You need a place to write. Maybe you have a corner home office like me, or maybe you have a lap desk and a comfy chair. I’ve been there too. Whatever you have and whatever it is, you MUST make your writing space a writing space. That means for the writing time you’ve scheduled, that office, corner, bedroom, etc. IS your writing space and nothing else. If you have a desk, clean it. If you need to move some stuff around, do it. You will be grateful for this in time.
You need a surface and a chair. There’s not much else you require. Bonus is a quiet room with a door that shuts, but not everyone has that luxury. When prepping your space, ask yourself what you really need.
First I think you should determine how you’re writing. Do you need pens and a notebook? Room for a laptop? Do you need noise cancelling headphones because you don’t have a door to shut?
Here’s my before:
It’s not horrible, but it’s also not conducive to focused writing. I needed to remove all the unnecessary and nonessential items and get myself organized. Now I have everything within reach and I have my writing routine calendar right in front of me
This is what it looks like now:
Much better. Let’s move on.
THIRD: TRACK YOUR PROGRESS!
This is very important too. Find or create your tracking process and stick to it. Now look, you have already done your MORNING PAGES and PREPPED your space, so there’s two things you can write down already. Then you write down that you TRACKED your progress. I’m going through this process myself along with you, so my tracking system looks like this. It’s very simple.
See? It doesn’t have to be special or even pretty. It can be functional and plain. Because I like pretty stuff too, I made a different one that I will probably use during the NANOWRIMO months.
If you go to GET ACCESS at linseyewing.com, you can also get this pretty writing tracker for FREE as well as the 5-week writing calendar we’re going through.
NOW IT’S TIME TO WRITE:
The next three days are about making 15 minutes to sit down and write. That’s 45 minutes over the next three days. You can do it. What is going to keep you writing for fifteen minutes? What’s going to be a distraction to you while you write? Move it. Get it out of the way. Turn off the TV or shoo your kids outside and put your phone on do not disturb. Get rid of the things that will keep you from writing. Remember this is only for 15 minutes.
Now write your morning pages.
Write about what you have done and write about what you dream for your space in the future.
Guess what. You are doing it. You are a writer.
REST: It’s just as important to schedule your rest time as it is to schedule your writing time. Since we’ve done an intensive three days, this is the day to rest. You will find your rhythm as you move forward. Right now just schedule it and take the day off.
PREP FOR NEXT WEEK. If you’ve already been to linseyewing.com and gotten your free resources, you should have a guide for next week already, but you can always schedule on different days. The point is to get a routine. Make time to do 4 writing sessions instead of 3. Plan for 2 of those to be 20 minutes instead of 15.
That’s it! You’ve made it through week one. How does it feel?
Drop me a line to tell me how this is working for you or how you think it could improve.
I’d love to hear from you.
I love this! 3 simple steps explained simply and thoroughly. Your writing tracker graphic is great!