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Day 2: so far, so good.

July 2, 2013

This morning , I really hadn’t expected today’s writing to go very well.  It took me absolutely forever to get to sleep last night (fun), and then I woke fairly early and subsequently found myself unable to get back to sleep (FUN).  Needless to say, I’m feeling a wee bit tired by this point.

After a good amount of procrastination in the morning, I decided to knuckle down and see if I could at least finish the thousand words I’d intended to do the day before.  I promptly did just that.  I then managed to crank out just over a thousand additional words, leaving my total word count at 2061.  Thus, after two days I’m ever so slightly ahead of my 1000-per-day target.  Honestly, I’m feeling rather chuffed right now.

I’m not sure if many of today’s words (or, hell, any of them) are actually any good but the key thing is that they’re presenting things which need to be presented.  I can make sure that these things are presented well once I get to the redrafting stage; right now, my primary aim is to simply get the entire story written down so that I have something to work with.

Since this post has come out a bit on the short side, I though I’d also share one the ways I’ve started getting more words out when a session isn’t going well.  Essentially, I leave my computer for around an hour and proceed to do a flurry of physical exercise: squats, press-ups and sit-ups, in that order.  I still need to work on my technique for the former two (particularly the squats), but they seem to do the job: I always feel invigorated afterwards and the resulting rush of the blood to my head does wonders for my writing speed. It’s the best way to break a block that I currently know.

Got any tricks of your own for breaking a writing drought?  Got a WIP right now?  Feel free to post your thoughts below.

From → Blogging, Writing

  1. I also do physical exercise. Two other ideas: 1) I often walk my dogs and talk out my problem with the story. I might look like the odd neighbor (No I don’t wear a blue tooth device to hide the fact I am talking to myself.) but honestly I don’t care and the dogs like that I am talking to them.
    2) I go for a cup of coffee. I walk down to the coffee house, so its a nice break.

    • Coffee! How did I forget to mention that? Admittedly, I’m more of a tea person, but the principle is the same :).

      Maybe I should try talking my stuff through with my cat at some point…

  2. That’s great! I still have to get my goal done for today, but I’m feeling rather lazy since I went way ahead yesterday.

    I do the same thing. Whenever I’m stuck, I tend to ride my bike. That is, if it’s not too hot (which it has been lately). Something about doing physical exercise and getting the blood flowing often helps me feel more inspired, and sometimes giving my mind a break from the story, if only for a few moments, can often help, too.

    • To be honest, you probably have more reason to feel lazy than a lot of us do, given the speed you’ve been going lately.

      I think that, really, the basic trick is to take our eyes away from the computer screen when the words stop flowing. Maybe it’s just me, but screen-staring leaves me feeling tired pretty quickly.

      • Perhaps. But if I get too lazy, then I’m going to end up getting behind, and I don’t particularly want that to happen.

        Staring at the screen too long sometimes makes it harder to get the words flowing. Often, it ends up giving me a headache as well.

  3. Best of luck with your WIP. I don’t really have a technique to break out of a block, except possibly to eat more chocolate or play some Halo. The problem with that is I end up playing Halo rather than writing….

  4. Nice! Progress is progress, regardless of how many words you write each day. I also do exercises when I break from writing – mostly because it feels good to move around again, especially when you’ve been sitting in one place for a while.

    Just curious: How many hours do you spend on the WIP each time you sit down to work on it? Or are you more focused on word count than hours spent?

    • To be honest, I tend to focus on wordcount more than the time taken to amass said words. That said, both my sessions on the WIP have been quite long given the wordcount at the end. Monday’s words were done in around 4 hours, and Tuesday’s words took a similar amount of time once breaks are taken into account.

      My writing speed has been a little slow so far; once I’m back in shape, so to speak, I imagine I’ll start to get a bit quicker.

      • That’s perfectly fine to focus on a word-count goal than a time-goal. 😉 Looking forward to reading about what happens on Day #3!

  5. I sit in front of the computer for a set period of time, even when I’d really rather not. Scheduling seems to work for me.

    • Starting has always been the worst part for me. I tend to set myself start-times (about 2 minutes’ time today, incidentally), but after that I just wait and see how long the session takes. So far, they’ve been quite long for not many words; I’m hoping I’ll get faster over time.

      Thanks for commenting 🙂

  6. It’s scientifically proven that you’re more creative when you’re tired. I personally find that the times I can really get words out are the morning and evening. I can do alright in the middle of the day but if I hit a stride where I’m cranking out 1000ish words an hour its almost ALWAYS in the morning or a few hours before bed.

    I also find that even if I’m not feeling inspired, if I sit down and start writing my muse realizes that I mean business and usually comes calling.

    • Mornings and afternoons tend to work well for me; the evening, not so much. It probably doesn’t help that I spend a lot of time on my PC regardless of what I’m doing, meaning that my eyes are already tired if I start too late.

      My experiences are similar to you with regards to feelings of inspiration. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that I rarely feel completely inspired before actually starting a session. I’m not sure how usual that is, but hey.

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