I do hope it is writing otherwise you aren’t writing during your writing time and that is confusing to me. I know the goal may be to become more disciplined in your writing schedule but speaking from personal experience- it may not work. I found it difficult to be creative when I was being rigid with my process. As it says in the book, rigidity and control don’t help us ease into the writer’s trance. There is one area you can and must be disciplined in, keeping the world out of your workspace during the Product Time. For this 15-minute window do nothing but write. Lock out all interruptions, even, dare I say it…your cellphone. Eeeeeeeeeekkkkkk! Nooooooooooo!
Welcome back to my crazy little world of chaos and education. How do those two things work together? Not well. Sorry. So, today in our amazing read, Around the Writer’s Block by Rosanne Bane, we will be talking/reading about…um…writing and how to write and when to write. Duh. Now, run along and find your copy, top off your cuppa, and grab a nibble. Today I have coffee (of course) and dates and walnuts as my yummy. What do you have in front of you? Halloween candy? I ran out. Proof would be my pant size. Anyway, meet me on page 111 when you are ready.
As we read forward you will see that this is a refresher of Product Time. A challenge has been given: for one week do nothing but Product Time during Product Time. Do not multitask or endure interruptions like email, Facebook, Twitter, texts…this even includes checking on your significant other, child/ren, dogs, or the ghost who likes to move things around in the entryway. I don’t think they like my flower arrangement.
Now comes the hard part of the challenge. When you turn on your lovely computer DO NOT use ANY other electronic devices. Ouch! I know, right, but if it helps. Silence your phone (not vibrate- SILENT) and set it out of sight. Turn off the television. Yes, it can be turned off. There is a handy power button on the remote and on the set itself. Good. Now that you are settled into a quiet space with your screen, here comes another hard one- DO NOT open any other windows on your computer other than the files you are working on. Really. No other windows. Um- it is harder than you think.
You will be happy to know there are exceptions to this tough as nails rule:
1. If you are doing research during this time, you will most probably need a search engine. However, studies have shown that the best way to retain the research you need to do is to find a hard copy version of it. This would be a great opportunity to find a window of time to schedule a trip to your local library. Studies have shown that we recall more from hard copies than ereaders.
2. If you enjoy music while you work, it is suggested that it is instrumental only. Lyrics can and will interfere in your train of thought.
3. If you write while your infant is down then, by all means, keep your monitor on. If you have others in your home that require your attentions, they should be able to muddle through for 15 minutes while you complete Product Time.
It’s 15 minutes dedicated to your work. You can spare that. They can spare you for that. You can do that. Right? Write? Just remember the best time to schedule Product Time is when you have no other MAJOR priorities on your plate. First thing in the morning or in the evening when all are settled in, are good times. During the day when you have 48 emails to respond to, 11 calls to return, a costume to sew (buy) for your children/puppy, plan dinner, go to 3 meetings that could have been handled via email, and avoid going to the gym. The middle of the day may not be a good window to be creative.
It’s amazing how much writing you do when all you do when you write is write. – Rosanne Bane