Hi there fellow writers! I would like to apologize for my two week hiatus from blogging. With all of my finals due last week, I barely had enough time to study let alone make my blog posts. In other news, I am going to start publishing one to two posts a week instead of three because I am going to be gone all of February for the military. Rather than taking another break, I am going to write of the content ahead of time and schedule it. A Bit of Business articles will be published on Sunday/Mondays, Writing Wednesdays are obviously on Wednesday, and Guest posts will be on Fridays. Not every week will have the full rotation, but you can expect at least one post from me and possibly one post from a guest per week. I hope everyone has been having a great time and that this has been a fantastic holiday season.
I do not want to give advice on how to craft certain elements of your story, instead I am want to discuss how to be more productive in your writing. I recently listened to a podcast on Rocking Self-Publishing that talked about how author Chris Fox aims to write 5000 words per hour. When I saw the title I was flabbergasted. I mean really? 5000 words per hour? That is a good week’s worth of work for me. When I listened to the podcast I found it to be rather insightful. Even more, I decided that I am going to aim at increasing my overall productivity.
The first tip that they gave was to know exactly what you are going to write before your start writing. Many times, we find ourselves sitting in front of a blank screen and waiting for inspiration to hit us like freight train. The problem with this is that our brains have a difficult time trying to come up with new ideas, while at the same time mechanically getting in the mindset in which we can let them flow onto paper. By separating these two tasks you can approach each of them easier. Make a routine of going on a walk for twenty minutes before you type. Brainstorm where your story is at, and where you think it is going to go. Play everything out in your mind and you will be surprised that when you finally sit down at the keyboard and you will have the chance to actually start typing, rather than staring.
The second point that they discussed involved training your mind to work harder. This is similar to the idea that when you first begin a habit of exercising your muscles are not conditioned to the rigorous physical activity. Overtime, they will strengthen and you can find that you are much stronger than when you first began your workout regime. Your brain works in a similar fashion. If you focus your writing into set, timed sprints then you are harnessing the frantic energy that can make you the most productive. Do not worry about typos, word usage, or even grammar because the goal of this super rough draft is pure creative output. You want to rip the words from your mind as soon as they come to you. This is a way that you are able to harness all of the words per minute that we practiced when we were in school. If you can write, on average, 60 words per minute, then in a five-minute amount of time you should be able to write 300. Taking this further then in one hour you should be able to write 3600.
Finally, don’t try to sit down and cram out 3600 words in a one-hour sitting. This kind energy is unpredictable and honestly very tiring. Break it up into five-minute increments at first. If the words are still flowing at the end give yourself five more minutes, and if not give yourself a break. Overtime, your brain will adapt to write quickly and you can extend the length of your writing sprints. Imagine what you could do if it only took thirty minutes to write 1800 words.
After all you guys check out Chris Fox and listen to the Rocking Self Publishing podcast head on over and support his work. I look forward to seeing you guys next week. By the way this post took me 12:58 minutes to type. Which means on average I was writing at 2797 words per hour. Throughout the day, I could complete five more sprints and more than double my overall productivity.