Some writers balk at writing schedules. They believe since writing is a creative activity, they should write when the muse strikes them. If writing is a hobby and nothing more, this half-hazard way of approaching is fine. But if you have plans do be a professional writer than you should do what professionals have done to succeed. Most professional writers schedule their writing time. Peter DeVries once said, “I write when I’m inspired, and I see to it that I’m inspired at nine o’clock every morning.” Stephen King writes every day until he’s achieved a certain word count. Dean Koontz has a regular time where he goes into his office to write.
There are many ways to plan and organize your writing schedule to be more effective. Here’s some ideas to help you.
Set a Writing Time: It’s easier to be productive when you set the same time to write every day. Make sure the time you set is a time when you are fresh and ready to work. For some, that means getting up early. Others will want to stay up late. Do what works for you.
Set Writing Goals: Some writers set a daily word count. They will not stop writing until that word count is accomplished. Other writers do better when they decide how much time they’re going to write. They might write longer, but they’ll at least write that certain amount of time.
Set Up a Writing Place: Finding a corner away from the family is a great way to organize. When you are in your writing area or office, you reduce interruptions by setting up a zone where you are working away from the chaos of family life. Your office or area should have all the tools you need including some visual aides to set the mood. One thing your writing area shouldn’t have is a phone. Mute your phone and leave it where you can’t easily check it.
Compartmentalize Your Writing: If you’re writing on more than one project, decide what time you’ll devote to each project. For instance, you might want to write all of your blog posts for the week and journal on Mondays. Tuesdays and Wednesdays you could devote to your novel. Thursdays would be short stories and magazine articles. Fridays you could devote to editing or outlining and researching your next novel. Or you might be the type of person who writes every day on one project until it’s finished. Then you’ll start the next project. Again do what works best for you.
Editing: Decide how you’re going to edit. Some writers edit while they are writing. Others wait until the first draft is finished to do all of their editing. There’s no right or wrong way, but decide which works best for you and stick to it.
Every worth while thing in life takes persistance and discipline.