Writing productivity

by Janeen Eckhart

Away from the keyboard

Away from the keyboard

Steve, forgive me if this isn't exactly how you wanted to use the forum, but it certainly seems in the spirit...

I'm struggling with my writing productivity. Even when I'm not blocked, I'm not happy with my output. Does anyone have any tricks that they use?

Staying productive as a writer

by: Steve B. (webmaster)

Janeen, that's a great subject. Of course, I only know what works for me...

I know that I'm more creative in the a.m. (good time to do first drafts) and more analytical in the afternoons (good time to edit). So I guess tip #1 is to pay attention to when you're productive and when you're not, and try to arrange your schedule accordingly.

Getting up and going for a walk helps me when I'm stuck.

When this writing productivity trick is most effective is when I have the plot point I'm trying to figure out well-defined. If it's vague, I could end up walking for miles...and getting lost! When it's well-defined, sometimes I get no farther than next door before I've got it figured out. Then it's the mad dash home...before I forget!

When I'm working on a long piece of writing, like a screenplay or a novel, I sometimes employ a writing productivity trick that I read about somewhere. (I wish I could give the writer credit, but I can't remember who it was.) The trick...

When you're getting ready to call it a day, stop a little short of finishing what you were working on. In other words, if there's a paragraph left to write in the chapter, and you know exactly how to write it...don't! Leave it for your next writing session, because that positive momentum that you'll be starting with might carry you through a potential blockage as you start the next chapter/scene/whatever.

Along those lines, the best productivity move I ever made was to start this website! I have a whole looseleaf notebook full of different pages I can write. The neat thing about my webhost is that they include a keyword research tool.

(Once you click to the page, click the box that reads Brainstorm It.)

In other words, I'm able to generate a list of subjects in the children's book area that people are looking for information on. I get to see something that I feel confident about writing today, and then I get to go write it.

Goodbye writer's block!

Comments for Writing productivity

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Productivity is essential!
by: Jenni M.

It helps me to have more than one project going. If I feel blocked on something, I just switch!

Imagination starter: kids!
by: Anonymous

Nothing works better for me when I'm stuck than talking to my kids! They are so much more in touch with their imaginations, and I find that it rubs off.

And Steve, I'll bet the reason that you're more creative in the morning is that you're closer to your dream state.

I'll bet you're right...
by: Steve B. (webmaster)

...whoever you are!

Producing ideas...in bed!
by: Anonymous

I often find I come up with some of my best writing ideas when I'm lying in the dark, trying to get to sleep... probably because my mind can switch off from the day to day and mundane and branch off on its own journey.

So if you can't think of that next leg of your book, get an early night... you may just find yourself switching the light on less than 10 minutes later, tapping furiously at your computer/writing frantic notes on a pad of paper kept by the bed specifically for said brainstorm.

Unfortunately this productivity trick does often mean that an early night turns into the latest night you'll have all week, so don't use if you genuinely need an early night!!

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