A Culture Shift

I touched on this a bit on my year end post, but I wanted to expand on it here. Before I can make a change, I need to observe what’s not working. I’ve formed a lot of bad habits recently, and they’ve impacted my writing time. Even now, as I type this, I’ve paused at least a half dozen times, distracted by things on my phone, or “ooh! I need to remember to [do X] later” thoughts.

But I think that’s part of the problem. In the name of “multitasking”, or more accurately, giving in to distraction, I’m often fracturing my time pivoting from one task to the next, rarely fulfilling any, and spinning my wheels with nothing to show for it. (Side note: as I typed the previous two sentences, Word froze up on me for no damn reason, and I resisted any urge to do something else until it unfroze.)

So yeah, technology is part of the problem.

Another part was how I was spending my time. Through the latter half of 2018, I was writing so infrequently that I would often spend part of my writing time refreshing my memory of where I was in the story, and what parts were coming next. I alleviated some of this by leaving notes to my future self, but even then I had to go back and reread often before I could get going. And that ballooned out my required writing time, which in turn reduced when I could write, because I needed a larger patch of time.

Condensing all of that, I’ve come to this conclusion. In order to get the words out, I need to fit in more, shorter, writing sessions. Hopefully this will achieve a few things:

  • Write more frequently, because they’re shorter sessions
  • Reduce re-reading time, because I’m writing more frequently
  • Make better use of my writing time, because I’m rereading less
  • Leave my phone elsewhere when I’m writing, to minimize distractions
  • …which all results in a higher word production rate (hopefully)

That’s the plan. I’ll let you know how it works out. And with that, I’ll wrap this up and actually work on the book now.

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