7 techniques for optimizing your writing time

Setting aside hours or even smaller modules can be difficult. These tactics will set you on a path to get at least some writing accomplished every day.

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Though it’s certain that most of us have mind-manglingly busy lives, it’s also true that we can usually find enough time to watch TV, dabble in Facebook or go for coffee with friends.

I’m not suggesting that you abandon these activities, but if you want to write you must carve out some protected time.

I don’t know your schedule, so I can’t predict what precise time will work for you, but here are seven tactics you can employ while you look for it:

1. Write first thing in the morning. Even if you’re a night owl (as I used to be) it’s so much easier to write first thing in the morning. There are fewer distractions—little email, no phone calls, no screaming children (unless you still have babies). Even better, your cranky, critical inner-editor is slower to awaken than your creative brain. If you can squeeze in 30 minutes—even 15 is a good start—of first morning writing, you are far less likely to become incapacitated by doubt. This has been the experience of writers such as Merrill Markoe, and it’s been my own, as well. After writing for just 30 minutes every morning for the last few months, I’ve hit the 34,000-word mark for my next book. (Only 36,000 more words to go!)

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