As an unpublished writer, my deadlines are self-imposed and so is my schedule. It’s easy to procrastinate and to move writing to the bottom of my priority list. I’ve found a few tools that keep me on track.
- I tell my friends what I’m doing.
Whenever I see them, they ask about my progress. It’s embarrassing to have nothing to report, so I work to keep my projects moving forward.
- I schedule my writing time.
If I block out time on my calendar for writing, I don’t schedule other activities during those hours. If I have no choice but to make an appointment during my most alert time of day, I move my writing time, but it stays on the calendar.
- I use a kitchen timer.
When I sit down to write, I set the timer for forty-five or fifty minutes. I write until the timer goes off. Then I get up and do something else for ten or fifteen minutes. And then I repeat.
These tricks are simple, but they help me stay focused on what matters to me.