It’s that time of year again, the holidays. It doesn’t matter how fantastic of a writing schedule you used to have, that schedule no longer applies to you now. Your writing time will now be messed up by gift shopping, decorating, cooking and family visiting. Not that you won’t enjoy all of those things but it’s going to seriously hinder you ability to find time to write.
This is currently my dilemma. So I’ve decided to share what I’m doing to help me write when I don’t have a set schedule. The following is a list of tips that I hope will help you.
1. Set your expectations- If it’s the week your family is coming to visit don’t expect to write 10 chapters, realistically this is not going to happen. Setting unrealistic expectations is only going to stress you out and keep you from enjoying your time with loved ones. So take a serious look at what you actually think you can get done and don’t be upset if you don’t accomplish everything you planned.
2. Down time adds up- We all have a little down time during the holidays, whether it’s a free day or a few hours. Take advantage of this time. Plan to work hard and quickly during the time you have free, even if it’s only 30 minutes it adds up over time. I recommend setting a timer and promising yourself that you will work straight through your free time without any distractions.
3. Adjust your tasks- Maybe you’ve been pushing off some editing or research tasks that don’t require as much time as writing a few thousand words. Consider doing these tasks first and save your more consuming tasks for when you can allocate the appropriate time.
4. Do something- When our schedules are all over the place we have a tendency to not want to or not feel like doing anything. Readjust your thinking, remember that writing is a cumulation of several small actions taken over time. Do something to keep your momentum going and maintain your habits. If you do nothing it will be a lot harder to get started again because you will be building habits from scratch.
I hope this advice on writing without a schedule has helped. If you have any recommendations please share them in the comments below, I look forward to hearing your advice.