05 April

A Writing Schedule...


A writing schedule...
It's a mystery to me that people treat writing and playing the piano differently. 
Both require practice.
Both cannot be accomplished simply by owning a piano or a pen. 
You will not be skilled at writing by having some pie-in-the-sky romantic notion that to simply plunk down fingers on a computer keyboard will make you the next Hemingway. Hemingway wasn't Hemingway when he started. He became himself after years of practice, under deadline, and forcing from his brain the production of completed works whether he felt like it or not. 
For the piano, it's playing the horrid scales. OMG, I just type the word, scales, and I break out into a stress rash!
For writing, it's the work of COMPLETING a story — the start, the mushy middle, and the end. 
Most new writers never complete any works. They adore the new story honeymoon phase, but as soon as their idea well runs dry, or they write themselves into a plot corner, the work is dropped, to collect figurative dust in some far-off computer file or desk drawer.
The ONLY way a new writer becomes an experienced writer who completes works is to start writing, regularly, and with the intention of completing every work they begin.
In my in-person process group, I had the members complete a ONE-PAGE ONLY flash story, due every meeting, so they had to work on the Start, Middle, and Finish of a singular tale. 
It lowered their fears of the Unknown in completing a work. 
It forced them to produce by a deadline. 
And like piano scales, it got their mind trained to story-telling completion.
** Have YOU scheduled yourself to do the equivalent of piano scales as a writer???**
HOMEWORK: This week, craft a writing schedule for yourself. Once complete, DELETE a THIRD of that schedule. I know you. Your eyes and bigger than your stomach right now.
If you have no idea what your best times are to write, 
Your HOMEWORK is: keeping a diary for the next 2 weeks to ascertain when you have free time (no job hours), when you are healthy, alert, not sleeping, and domestic responsibilities are completed. In that diary, also diarize when you SCREW AROUND - the minutes and hours you fritter away playing games or watching TV or just staring out a window. Now, take ONE THIRD of that goof-off time and reschedule it to writing. There is no gain without pain, peeps. Losing 1/3 of your goof-off time won't kill you, and it just might make you a successful writer!
Comment below any questions you have, but take this seriously. 
You want to finish a book, right? Well, follow me. 
I'll get you there if you do the steps I outline. Now get at'er! 

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