Writers struggle with finding the time to write. If there were a list of the top ten things that keep writers from writing, finding time would land near the top of the list.
Over the past year, I’ve done five things that have drastically increased my productivity. I’ve written a novel (I’m working on getting it published now), completed five online writing courses, created my author website, and written over 17 short stories. How? Keep reading.
5 Tips To Increase Your Productivity As A Writer
Tip #1. Set a time every day to write and stick to it no matter what.
Seriously. This seems obvious but it isn’t. How often do you push your writing to the side because you don’t have the time? Here’s a secret: there is always time.
How long do you spend on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram? Ever spent the day binge-watching a series on Netflix or Hulu?
I’m not pointing fingers. We are all guilty of falling down the rabbit hole of distractions that social media and TV provide. But if you’re serious about writing, you’ll make time for it. If not, you’ll make excuses. Try this:
- Set a time each day to write.
- Set a word or time limit.
- Don’t stop until you’ve reached your goal.
- Save your work. No matter how awful you think it is. You’d be surprised how many ideas for books are hiding there.
Don’t know what to write?
Tip #2. Use writing prompts to get the creative juices flowing.
Some days ideas flow like water from a faucet. Other days my brain is dry as the Sahara Desert. The game changer for me was writing prompts.
Where can you get them?
If you haven’t signed up for the Writer’s Write newsletter, I highly recommend it. No, they didn’t ask me to say that. Their daily emails include a writing prompt.
If you’ve never used a prompt before, try it. They help you think outside the box. Think of it as mental stretching for your brain. Once you try it, I promise you’ll wonder why you didn’t use them before.
Tip #3. Don’t wait until you “feel” inspired. It may never come.
I wasted a lot of years saying “I’ll write when something inspires me.” That is a fool’s game. I read somewhere that the difference between successful and unsuccessful writers is persistence. If you read any personal biographies on famous writers, you will see that they did two things: wrote every day and were persistent.
Writing is hard. Writing every day in spite of how you “feel” can be a challenge. But feelings are fickle, folks. Write every day in spite of how you feel. That’s what writers do. And you’re a writer, aren’t you?
Tip #4. You are a writer. Say that. Out loud.
Stop saying “I want to be a writer.” If you write every day, you are a writer. Having an agent and being published aren’t what make you a writer. You’re a writer because you write.
And don’t call yourself an aspiring writer either. If you were a chef in a kitchen, would you call yourself an aspiring chef? No, you’d say (very proudly) “I’m a chef.”
So proudly declare “I’m a writer” the next time someone asks.
Tip #5. Join a writing challenge.
Again, this isn’t a shameless plug. Joining the 12 Short Stories Writing Challenge has really stretched my writing skills. For one thing, it allows me to put my writing out there to share with the world. That’s what this writing thing is all about, right? What good is writing if you don’t share it with other people?
The feedback you get from other writers helps you see places where your writing can be improved. You also learn how to provide useful critiques, which also makes you a better writer. A writing challenge will force you to write. It’s also a great motivator and lots of fun!
If you are serious about writing and want to take your writing to the next applying these tips to your daily routine are sure to help.
by Audra Russell. Audra is an emerging author with a passion for writing stories that take readers on an emotional roller coaster. She is also a book addict and loves to grow her own food.