I have found that once I start writing, I can write decent quality writing pretty fast. It took me just sixteen minutes to write 450 words of my WIP novel. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the abbreviation WIP it means Work In Progress. I just learned it not too long ago. It took me about an hour and a half to write 1,450 words today. Two days ago I wrote about 2,200 words in about two hours.
But yesterday, I wrote nothing in my novel. I had the day off from work, and I got so distracted by other writing projects and, let’s be honest, getting lost browsing the internet, that I just didn’t work at all on my novel.
What was I working on? Blog posts, my Coffee House Writer’s articles (I am now a month in advance on these articles), emails and Facebook posts. Plus getting lost on the black hole that consists of Facebook, YouTube, and the blogosphere.
Just getting started is hard. I have to have the motivation to start working on my novel. Today, I was weighing the things I wanted to do. Should I read, check my social media and followed blogs, or write my novel?
I decided for the hell of it to write my novel. I wanted to see if I could create on the same timeline as I did two days ago: about 1,000 words per hour. And I did it! I guess that is my typing speed when I am inspired or motivated to write. Especially if it’s something I enjoy writing. If it’s something I don’t enjoy (as much) like the paper I have to write for school this coming week, I still have to measure my productivity. Words per hour, that is.
When I am writing something, I have to think before and as I am writing. I often go back and edit as I am typing because I think of a better word or phrase to put in the previous paragraph and changing these takes some of the time out of my writing. Plus thinking pauses of what I’m going to say next and how I am going to say it slow me down.
All I need is the push to get started in order to set off the creative process. Sometimes all it takes is reading over what I had written before in my novel, to get the voice in my head. Sometimes it requires reading or listening to other writers’ encouragements. Sometimes all it takes is a statistic. Like the one I mentioned in Riding an Idea High about how just 500 words a day leaves you with a 50,000 word novel in 100 days, or a little over three months.
I could write it in half that time, if I can write 1,000 words a day. All that would require is an hour of my time per day. It takes the “just get started” push to make that writing happen.
Do any of you have tips or tricks for the “just get started” push? What do you use? It could be for anything: your blog, novels, short stories, articles, and school papers just to name a few. I would love to hear more about your writing processes and what works for you!