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9 Ways to Write More and Stay True to Your Dreams

Updated on December 27, 2015

Will You Die Before You Write Your Life?

Do you want to be a writer? The answer to that is almost certainly “yes” since some estimates put the number of Americans who dream of writing a book at a cool 200 million.

The real question, then, is what are you doing to fulfill that dream? For the vast majority of us, the answer to THAT query is “nothing”!

We all know the excuses we give ourselves, right? Too busy, too tired, too young, too old, not quite ready, writer’s block – on and on and on they go.

There may be occasions when those excuses are legitimate reasons for not writing, but for the the most part, they’re bunk.

The time is now to get off your writing butt and stop being scared about what you can or cannot accomplish. You won’t know for sure until you try, and it’s too late when you die.

To help you out, here are 8 ways to write more starting today and stay true to that author in your heart.

No Boundaries Can Stop Your Writing

Write when and where you can!
Write when and where you can! | Source

Get Up Early

How much time do you need to write a hundred words? A few hundred? Once you get into the writing groove, even 10 minutes can obliterate that blank screen in front of you.

Set your alarm a whopping 12 minutes early on work days, and you will have magically found a full hour to write every week.

Burning the midnight writing oil
Burning the midnight writing oil | Source

Stay Up Late

If your throbbing head can’t stand the thought of getting up early in the morning, you may need to re-examine your lifestyle. Or, you could just stay up even later instead. What’s another few minutes when you’ve already passed the witching hour, anyway?

Write at Lunch

What do you do for lunch? If your plans don’t include writing, then you’re missing out on a huge block of time to hone your craft. If you can swing it, eat and write at your desk. At worst, you should be able to find a quiet corner somewhere to scribble in a notebook.

Write While You Watch TV

Everybody wants you to give up TV, because it’s such a time-sucker, and that’s a great idea. You don’t have to go that far, though, because most brain-enabled people are capable of typing on a laptop while Modern Family plays on the living room tube. You may have some heavy editing to do later, but you CAN write while hanging out with the family.

Try Free Writing

Speaking of heavy editing, have you tried free writing yet? If not, you need to treat yourself to this experience soon and frequently. To free write, set up your work area, turn off distractions (if you wish), set a timer, and then write until the alarm dings. Don’t pause, don’t look up synonyms, don’t edit. If you want your session to be REALLY productive, don’t even look at the screen while you write – I like to watch a video or gaze out the window. Sure, the result will be a visual mess, but you can write hundreds of words in no time flat, and it’s an almost instant cure for writer’s block.

Tell your story!
Tell your story! | Source

Write With Your Voice

For a change, or if circumstances won’t allow you to actually write, you can always dictate your thoughts into your smart phone. This method lacks some of the tactile experiences of “real” writing, but you’ll end up transcribing the work later, anyway, and it can keep you in the creative groove.

Carpool

If you have a long commute to work, then you know all about soul-sapping black holes. You can turn that abyss into an oasis, though, by using mass transit or setting up a carpool. On the days you don’t drive, what better way to pass the time than pounding out some verbiage?

Write on Breaks

Don’t smoke? Don’t fret! You can use your breaks at work or at school to create! You usually won’t have much time, so this is a great opportunity to use your new-found free-writing skills.

Bring It All Together With Pomodoro

The Pomodoro Technique is a very simple method for helping you focus on a specific task for a brief period of time. It can help you laser in on whatever topic you're writing about for whatever sliver of time you might have. Traditional Pomodoro works like this:

  • Pick a task to work on.
  • Set a timer for 25 minutes and work until the bell tolls.
  • Take a five-minute break.

You repeat the 25-on-5-off pattern for four total cycles, or two hours, and then take a longer break. If you have less time available, then reduce your Pomodoro duration accordingly.

It may sound too simple to work, but it can dramatically increase your writing productivity and help you squeeze out as many words as possible each day, no matter when you write.

If you want to learn more particulars about the method, you can read my complete guide to Pomodor for writers.

It's Your Move

Of course, there are plenty of other ways that you can squeeze in some time for writing, but I’ll leave it to you to figure those out.

No doubt you’ll come up with some good ones, because you’re creative. When you do, tell me about them in the comments below, or tell me which of these ideas you plan to try.

You’re going to be a writer, after all!

How do YOU plan to fit writing into your schedule?

See results

About the Author

Adam Hughes is a writer and IT professional from central Indiana. Visit his website at AdamHughesWriter.com for free short stories and other writing tips, and to see what effect miles of corn fields can have on a man's fiction.

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    • Adam Hughes profile imageAUTHOR

      Adam Hughes 

      3 years ago from Indiana

      @annasmom -- Good luck on your writing journey. I'd love to hear about how you're progressing.

      @B. Leekley -- It's really easy to get distracted these days, especially online. A former co-worker was sold on Dragon Naturally Speaking, but I haven't given it much of a try to this point. Sounds like maybe I should give it another go.

    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 

      3 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      I use some of your suggestions and some other, similar, ideas--like writing or mind-mapping on scratch paper while waiting in a line or for a bus or riding in a car or on a city bus or waiting for water to boil. I also use Dragon Naturally Speaking to type faster when I type my jottings. The result is that I have numerous works of fiction and nonfiction started or partially done and few works finished and posted or submitted. That includes my yet to be finished and edited past NaNoWriMo output. I am, I think, an enneagram 9, a personality type that is easily sidetracked.

    • annasmom profile image

      annasmom 

      3 years ago

      May need you at my elbow making sure I follow through, but thanks for the advice.

    • Adam Hughes profile imageAUTHOR

      Adam Hughes 

      3 years ago from Indiana

      @FatBoyThin ... I agree but have not been able to "kick the habit."

      @erorantes ... Thanks for reading and commenting. You're right: we need to prioritize our writing.

    • erorantes profile image

      Ana Maria Orantes 

      3 years ago from Miami Florida

      It is an excellent idea Mister adamhughes. I like your hub with different advices. Writing needs to be active at anytime; we have time to write. Other wise it become passive. Thank you for sharing your ideas.

    • FatBoyThin profile image

      Colin Garrow 

      3 years ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      All good advice, Adam, though I think the best thing is to just give up TV.

    • Adam Hughes profile imageAUTHOR

      Adam Hughes 

      3 years ago from Indiana

      Thanks for reading, Rowen. Happy writing!

    • profile image

      Rowen Rivahein 

      3 years ago from Singapore

      Nice article!

      I will keep this as my motivation haha

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