Thoreau went to the woods to suck the marrow out of life; here, I hope to drain every drop from the books I read, rather than tossing them aside and saying vaguely, “Oh yes, I read that once,” when they come up in conversation.
I’m a Christ-follower, a wife, a mother, a wannabe novelist (with a complete manuscript, no less!), and—of course—a reader. Stick around, poke around, speak up, and enjoy…and definitely recommend your favorites, because my mile-long to-be-read list could always be longer!
Wanna Write Alotta?
I picked up a neat little book the other day at the library. Then, I went home and began reading it.
I put it down to have some dinner and play with Pookie. I put her to bed, kissed my husband, snuggled into a chair, and finished said book.
Do you know how satisfying it is to finish a book in an evening?!
Granted, I skipped a chapter or two in the middle that didn’t apply to me, but at any rate, it was lovely to see something through to the end; I felt like Winston Churchill, who claimed he read a book every evening.
So, what did I read?
Silvia writes specifically about academic writing (which is why I skipped quite a bit), but his main principles can apply to bloggers, novelists, journalists, etc.:
*Create a writing schedule. I need to get back to this…because I’m in the editing phase, I tell myself that I need an entirely different system, but Silvia points out that your scheduled writing time is for any activity relating to your writing. He says he takes one day a month of his writing time to plan: projects, priorities, goals, and how exactly he will use his upcoming writing time. Genius!
*Just do it, material situation be darned. I admit, I dream of a pretty room with a particular desk and special chair just for my writing, but I need to wake up to the fact that I can write in any place if I have paper and pen.
*Reward yourself. I let loose when I finished writing my novel manuscript: plenty of treats from the convenience store, extra time to sit around and watch TV…but maybe small rewards for reaching small goals would help me achieve more. He also recommends tracking your progress somehow, because everybody loves gold stars and hates to see a blank tally sheet.
*Start a writing goals group. Not just a group to talk about writing, books, publishing, whatever. A group in which everybody writes down a goal for the next week/2 weeks/month/until the next meeting and is held accountable to meet that goal.
Short highlights from a short but helpful book–great for the academic in your life or anybody looking to write…and write a lot!
I’m going to back to writing (or editing for now) for an hour during afternoon naptime–I get a big checkmark for today!