Monday, 8 June 2015

How to get into the habit of writing every (other) day

On several occasions I've tried to get myself into the habit of writing every day. You now what they say about repeating an action for 21 day to set it as a habit? Well, apparently that doesn't work for me. I've tried different websites, that would send me daily reminders "Hey! This is your writing time! Ready! Set! Go!". I once managed to go, I think, two or three months straight without missing a day, until I did.

"Don't break the chain" is a method that I often see people using in order to build a habit. It's when you take a calendar and cross out every day, when you did your thing. The point is to have every single day crossed out. This method works with the 21-day concept, except that you don't just stop after 21 day. But I'm already familiar with the disappointment of missing one day or a few days in a row. It's stressful! What do you have to do then? Start over or continue your chain, which isn't even a chain anymore? This might work for some people, but I lack the discipline, and I can't deal with this visualisation of my own failure.

Allow yourself to miss a day. If you want to write every day, start with every other day. Work it up.

I did BEDA on my other blog this year, and pretty much nailed it. Some days I posted right after midnight, so technically it didn't count for that day. But then I'd have some days with two posts. I decided to bend one rule in this competition with myself, as long as I still ended up with 30 posts at the end of April.

If I don't feel like writing, I won't, unless I force myself to sit down and get the first line out of the way. Once I do that, I start gaining speed and don't stop at least for another 30 minutes. Words rush out of my head one after another. I don't think I've ever managed to write more than a 1000 words in one sitting though, but I think I'm getting there. That won't happen every single time I write. But it's nice to have some of these productive days once in a while.

I did actually write somewhere around 8000 words in a single day once. I wouldn't recommend doing so. It's really physically exhausting, and I couldn't normally function for the next few days. I did it just because I was miserably failing at NaNoWriMo, so hopefully that won't happen again any time soon.

It's okay to pace yourself. Writing is just as much a job as any other.

At the end of the day it's all about the result. You may stress about how you have to write more, or count down your words. But as long as you are not looking at a blank page or a nicely written in calligraphic letters "The", you're gonna be okay. So don't beat yourself up if you don't meat your word quota every time you sit down to write.

Even a hundred words count.

It's not even about the quality. Quality comes after you start editing, at this point you're just teaching yourself to write.

There's just one question you really need to ask yourself.

Do you want to write? Then do it! No "buts". Don't overthink it. Just sit down and write.

Even if at first it'll all look like nonsense. Once you get that gibberish out of your head, thoughts will start falling together into ideas.

It all comes with practise. Train yourself into it.

Do you ever struggle with your writing? What are your habits and tips for fellow writers?


  1. Love a good bit of inspiration like this ! Brilliant post :)

    Lots of Love, Marianne xxx

  2. Love a good bit of inspiration like this ! Brilliant post :)

    Lots of Love, Marianne xxx