I have a secret: writing is sometimes painful for me. Really, really painful. As in watching Justin Bieber videos on repeat painful (except “Sorry” because I actually like that song #sorrynotsorry). Even though I am a writer and have wanted to be one pretty much my whole life (“book” was my first word), sometimes the thought of writing is as appealing as going on one of those group dates on The Bachelor.
Today is one of those days for me. As much as I wish I could tell you that writing this post is like running through a field with Care Bears (which actually sounds creepy now that I type it), it is a bit of a struggle today. I just got back from a lovely weekend at the beach, so my focus is not really great today. I have checked my Facebook and Twitter. I have opened a few fiction books and closed them. I have called my mom. I may or may not have watched an obscene amount of Booktube videos.
But I am here. And writing. How? Well, I have found a few “hacks” to make writing more pleasant when I would rather snuggle with my Corgi.
1. Listen to Amazing Music
I am the world’s biggest proponent of creating really awesome playlists when you are writing. It helps me keep my spirits up and makes the whole experience more fun. Also, if you have a set playlist, it can “trigger” you to write. Once you hear LFO’s “Summer Girls,” you know it is time to write. Curious as to what I am listening to right now? “Whatta Man” by Salt-N-Pepa. Because the nineties live on. And rightfully so.
2. Wear What You Want
You can write in your PJs if it makes easier for you. I personally always wear a dress or another “daytime” outfit, because it helps me feel focused and productive. However, my hair is another story. Want to know how stressed out I am when I am writing? Look at my hairstyle. The more stressed I am, the wackier my hair. Right now my hair is in two buns at the top of my head (yes, I watched Sailor Moon growing up). I will let you interpret that as you will. Anyway, don’t take up valuable mental energy worrying about what you will wear. Wear what is comfortable and makes you happy.
3. Have a Designated Time and Place
Stephen King mentions the importance of having a designated time and place to write in On Writing. I couldn’t agree more. Having a set time and place to write makes it easier to immediately start writing. When is the best time and place? That really is up to you. If you work best in a coffeeshop at 8 am, more power to you. If that is in your bed at 10 pm, that is equally awesome. The key is to make sure that is at a time and place where you will get the most optimal work done.
4. Treat. Yo. Self.
Mimosas? Treat yo self. Fine Leather goods? Treat yo self. Okay, maybe you cannot afford fine leather goods, but you should treat yo self after you write (even if it is something as small as a piece of chocolate). Not only is it a great motivation, but it gives you a guilt-free way to enjoy your favorite things! An episode of Once Upon the Time waits for me after I finish this post.
5. Remember Your “Why”
I assume you are not writing without a reason. I am sure you are doing it for some larger purpose. Maybe you want to write a young adult book that will make teens feel less alone in high school? Maybe it is a blog post that will help you promote your latest product? Or is it a review of a book that you want everyone you read? Or maybe it is just for fun and gives you a creative outlet? Whatever the reason, remember it when writing feels painful. Write it on a Post-It and put it on your laptop monitor if you have to. Just remember to move it before you start writing.
Want me to help you find ways to make your writing more fun? Perhaps you need help establishing a routine or coming up with fun ideas for rewards? Then book a Novel Idea session (psst…you can also book for non-fiction or blogs too)!