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Bending Space and Time : Seven Steps to More Writing Time

Seven Steps to
More Writing Time

By Tom Evans

Time FliesWriting time is one of the most precious commodities for an author. Many authors have to work hard to cram creative hours into already busy days.

Sometimes they are up early, sometimes late. Heaven forbid anyone who interrupts a writer when they are in their groove.

When you are in that state when things are just flowing, two strange phenomena seem to occur.

Firstly, it’s almost like your book is being dictated to you. You just know that the first draft is near perfect and will see itself through to the final edit. Secondly, time seems to take on a mysterious and even ethereal quality.

When we are in the zone, we are unstoppable and our output doubles, triples or even quadruples.

If you think about times when your are stuck though, it's almost certain other thought processes are in operation. Doubt, fear and anger are all anathemas to writers. Being guilty about taking the luxury to write in the first place will somewhat ironically stop you in your tracks. Harking back to a conversation in the past, or thinking about what you are having for supper, will block your Muse.

Now there are many practical time management techniques that writers can use to help out. Switching off your phone and email are a given. You may choose to lock your door to bar disruptive children, or partners. What works for me has been just telling both clients and colleagues that from 9 to 10:30 am each day, I will be writing or crafting something or other.

Right now, or is that write now, I am up at 5 am though as my Muse awoke me to write another chapter in my new book. This article is a spin off as I did completed the chapter in ’no time at all’ and I find myself with the luxury of more writing time I hadn't planned.

Over the last few years, I've researched how to get into the state where we are in flow. These are the simple steps I take before each writing session. They apply whether you are writing a book, a blog, some marketing copy or even a sales proposal.

Step 1: Do nothing — meditate for 10 or 20 minutes, or just go for a walk.

Step 2: Think of your reader — what and how can you write that would entertain them or give them great value.

Step 3: Think of yourself — what would you like to gain from your readers engaging with your work.

Step 4: Engage your right brain — do a doodle, or a mind map for what you are about to write.

Step 5: Sit in your writing chair and stare at a blank screen, or sheet of paper, with your eyes open but defocussed. Then breathe deeply 9 times, with your out breath about four times as long as your in breath.

Step 6: Write.

Step 7: When you finish give yourself a treat :-). •

Tom Evans Renaissance Man and Imagineer Tom Evans is the author of four books and counting about creativity. More »

7/8/12