Time is a Fickle Mistress


Hi, my name is Chris Joy, and I am a habitual procrastinator. I have dealt with it my whole life and to be honest, I am done with it. I think it is time to do something about it.

If I am going to turn my passion for writing into a career I am going to have to learn some discipline, and not just write when “inspiration strikes.” If I only wrote when I felt like it, I would probably tickle the keys (that is what they call writing, right?) maybe once a month. That simply isn’t going to work.

I found this lovely article on building healthy habits from Psychology Today that really got me thinking. I am going to try and turn writing into a habit. I am going to try and repetitiously write during certain times, with specific triggers, and within the same context. Here is what that will look like.

So, I already have the set and setting. I have a workstation in my bedroom that I will always use which has very few distractions and everything I need. I also have a playlist that I made in college, Click here if interested, that I would put on to study. I have found that when I put on that playlist I tend to associate it with studying and getting homework done. I feel like this is the perfect trigger to help me get in the mood for writing.

In terms of scheduling time, I am going to adopt two approaches.

  1. I have read from many different authors (sorry I can’t remember their names) that writing right when you wake up in the morning works well. I have tried this a few times already and really liked it. So I am going to get up an hour earlier than I normally would and write for 1 hour every morning.

2. My wife has created a schedule for me that works around work, family, and most important of all Dungeons and Dragons obligations that will amount to me being able to squeeze in 10 hours of writing next week, not taking into account writing in the morning and writing on my days off. It looks like this:

Thursday: 6-7pm

Friday: 3:30pm – 6:30pm

Saturday: 9:30pm – 11pm

Sunday: 9:30pm – 11pm

Monday: day off; 10am – 3pm (minimum)

Tuesday: day off (probably will write but wanted to keep it flexible)

Wednesday: 7-10pm

This means I have at least 20 hours of writing scheduled next week. This seems like a lot, but honestly, the way it is parceled out in small chunks, I don’t think that it will be too hard. I have most of my novel planned out at this point anyway, so I should be able to just sit down and immediately write without too much thought, planning, or getting stuck on ideas; although I know for a fact all of those things will still happen no matter how prepared I think I am.

I will approach this challenge with vigor and the determination of a cat who lost its toy under the fridge. Nothing can stop me but me; except circumstances and unforeseen responsibilities, but we don’t have to talk about those.

Anyway, wish me luck. Hopefully, I can build up some good habits and get up to Brandon Sanderson and Stephen King’s levels of productivity. HA! Like that is even possible.

I will keep you updated next week on how it went. Until then, take care, and thank you so much for reading.

~Chris Joy

Categories: Humor, Novice to NovelTags: , , , , ,

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