My day job (where I teach French and manage children’s programs for a private language school) is running a challenge for October. Students and teachers commit to study their language for 30 minutes a day for 30 days.
The idea is to build a habit.
This would work with writing, too. And it doesn’t have to be thirty minutes.
At my first ever writing conference, about five years ago, Laurie Halse Anderson advised us to write for 15 minutes every day. No, that doesn’t sound like much. But again, it’s about building a habit.
When I’m drafting, I just have to make time for those 15 minutes each and every day. Some days I have no problem getting my butt in the chair. But other days, if I’m not particularly feeling the love for my WIP, I have to force my butt into the chair. But I know it’s only for 15 measly minutes, so I do it.
Usually, those 15 minutes turn into hours, depending on the time I have available. Those 15 minutes turn into hundreds of words, sometimes thousands. And by taking that tiny bit of time every day, I don’t lose the flow of my narrative. I don’t have to take time to read over what I wrote during my last session, because it was only the day before (or mere hours earlier, depending on how obsessed I get).
So take your own 30 Day Challenge. Get your butt in the chair and write. See how long you can stretch your 15 minutes. How many words will you draft by the end of the month?
If you’re doing NaNo next month, you can plot for 15 minutes a day now, and write for 15 minutes (or more!) every day in November. You can win it!
And if you happen to speak Greek, maybe we can chat when I finish my challenge. One week in and my Greek is really coming along. Γειά!