Tuesday, August 9, 2011

TUES TIP Early Bird Bonus: How to Find Time to Write When U Have None

My regularly-scheduled Tuesday Tip is, in fact, scheduled to post here at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time. Blogger will send it off to you at precisely that hour, but if you're reading this, then like me, you're up early. As a reward--or punishment given as you're reading this instead of doing something productive with your early hours!--here's a link to a guest blog I saw on the Authonomy Blog.
Struggling to find the time to sit down with your novel between working, sleeping, commuting, eating [and drinking], hoovering the house, running around after your family, socialising, sleeping again...? Here are published author and writing guru Jane Wenham-Jones' top tips for making time for yourself and your book.
[ Read more ]

Although this entire article is written to the married-with-children-work-at-home indie author (which I am soooo definitely NOT), I do particularly like Tip #5. I don't drink (alcoholic beverages of any kind and yes, beer & wine count!) but I used to hang out at a Panera Bread coffee shop with about 6 other freelance writers and freelance journalists. It was ideal. We had the 4 C's of Writing Life: Coffee, connectivity, chocolate and company. And headphones for our laptops' MP3 players (grin)

We'd all camp out at our own little tables for that productive solitary time but every once in a while, someone would get up to stretch and go "visit" across the aisle with one or another of the colleagues who hadn't gotten up for more than 3 hours. It was working alone, with company. We kept each other from sitting still for too long. Yes, we did health checks on each other! Great rationalization, no? *haha*

Find a coffee shop with free WiFi (or a local pub if you can actually write well while under the influence; I've found most people write a lot, but poorly, while intoxicated and they never realize just how poorly until later...when they have to read and attempt to edit/salvage the work). Try to find one that has journalists or other freelance writers hanging out for the bottomless cup of coffee and free connectivity. Strike up a conversation with them. Then put on your headphones and open up the MP3 player alongside Word and get to work! You have 3 hours until your spine needs stretching. How much can you get done in 3 hours? ^_^

Be sure to stop back in about 5 hours to catch today's regularly scheduled Tuesday Tip!


Agnieszkas Shoes said...

There's no way I can drink even half a glass of anything and still write anything half decent. I'm a coffee and Relentless based writer. Coffee shops are absolutely perfect - maybe without wifi is even better - that way you don't spend all your time checking your timeline on twitter! In good weather I find even better is sitting outside on a busy pavement with my back against a wall watching people pass by and typing. Even better than cafes for people watching, and you feel like you're right in the heart of the action.

Webbiegrrl Writer said...

Dan, re checking my timeline on twitter, I can explain *blush*

LOL! Have you been watching me?

Actually I have Hootsuite set up to monitor all 5 of my social media accounts (2 twitters and 2 FB pages and 1 FB personal profile) and it's my *IPAD* chiming at me that makes me stop and check. Hootsuite so nice and quietly does it's thing in the background. I do usually close browser windows and put on the headphones, though, when I want to allow myself to zone out.

Also you're right about the "back to the wall" but I don't do that so I can watch others going by--that's another distraction!--rather, so that no one will bump into my back while I'm zoned in on my keyboard :) The cafe I named (Panera Bread) is a national US chain that has outdoor tables in nearly all locations :) Many have chess clubs or whatnot that come and gather on regular nights. Panera has a "no time limit" policy for sitting. It's only the free WiFi that is limited to one 30-min session per 24 hour period per customer so no one sits there permanently logged in. That's new. Back when I went you could stay logged in all day....which is why journalists loved it ;-)

What's "Relentless" ? Is that the name of a cafe in Oxford where you like to hang?