fbpx

7 Steps that Will Improve Your Writing Routine

//7 Steps that Will Improve Your Writing Routine

7 Steps that Will Improve Your Writing Routine

Do you have a writing routine?

I don’t know where I would be without mine.

Some days I have the hardest time writing. It can be hard to motivate myself to turn on the computer and start. Or I’m sitting at the computer but the words just aren’t coming. I’m checking my word count every other word. It feels impossible just to write a few decent sentences. Some days are harder than others.

These are usually the days when I don’t follow my writing routine.

Other days I have the easiest time writing. I’m motivated and my hands can’t type as fast as my brain is thinking. Words are flowing and advancing the plot or deepening the character development in ways I never dreamed possible. The words on the page surprise me sometimes. But they feel right. They feel natural. Before I know it I’ve reached or exceeded my word count goal. Some days are easier than others.

These are usually the days when I do follow my writing routine.

7 Steps that Will Improve Your Writing Routine

7 Steps that Will Improve Your Writing Routine www.getwritingdone.com

My writing routine is structured and specific. But it keeps me motivated and focused. It puts me in the right mindset to write productively and well. Everything seems to go more smoothly when I’m following my writing routine. Not only do I write faster, but I write better.

I know from personal experience that the writing routine I’m about to share works for me. I think it will be beneficial to you as well, but some of the steps may not help you. Every writer has to find what works for them. I hope these steps will inspire you to know what will improve your writing routine.

It may also be helpful to read about other writers’ routines.

1. Get Ready

A good first step is getting ready for the day. For me, this means taking a shower, doing my hair and makeup. Making sure I’m wearing something comfortable. If my hair isn’t clean or done I feel lazy and unproductive. If I’m ready for the day and feel clean and presentable, it’s so much easier to motivate myself to get things done. Getting ready for the day also helps me feel awake and alert. I can think better and that helps me write better.

2. Eat Breakfast

I write best in the morning, so I always make sure to eat a good breakfast before I start writing. Writing on a full stomach helps me focus. Food gives us energy and helps us focus. I definitely feel better when I eat breakfast. If I’ve eaten something before I start writing I’m also less likely to use hunger as an excuse to leave the room and procrastinate writing. If you write best after lunch or dinner, the same logic applies. If you don’t write directly after a meal, try eating a snack before you start writing.

3. Have Water with You

Once I finish breakfast, I fill up my water bottle and head to my writing space. I always make sure my water bottle is full and accessible before I start writing. Having water with me gives me one less excuse to leave the room. If I leave to go get my water bottle, sometimes I come back to my computer hours later. Sometimes I don’t come back. Drinking water as I write also keeps me hydrated and able to think and write better.

4. Keep Your Area Distraction Free

Before I sit down, I make sure my writing space is free from any distractions. A clean area is essential if I want to write well. So I always spend a few minutes tidying up my desk and surrounding space before I’m ready to write. Sometimes this even means taking the trash out or picking things up off the floor. The cleaner my writing environment is, the more likely I’m going to write better. Keeping my area distraction free can also mean silencing my phone and avoiding Facebook. If I’m constantly checking text messages or Facebook notifications it takes time away from writing and I have to remember what I was trying to write. It slows me down and disrupts my writing routine.

5. Read before You Write

Once I’ve removed all distractions, I’m ready to sit down but I don’t start writing quite yet! I try to read something before I write. Whether it’s reading the genre I write, or a book about writing, or even my journal, I like to read before I write. Reading prepares my mind to write as I read good examples of my genre or as I learn from a book about writing. Reading is a good warm-up activity to do before writing. Even if it’s just 10 or 15 minutes.

6. Have a Goal or Vision for the Day

Now that I’ve read something, you may think I’m ready to start writing. But there’s one more thing I like to do. I like to have a goal or vision for the day and a plan to achieve that goal. Sometimes it’s a small goal to write a certain amount of words or to write for a certain time limit. Other times I set a goal to focus on character development or natural dialogue or plot. Having a vision for the day keeps me focused on why I’m writing and makes writing more exciting!

7. Indulge Your Quirky Writing Habits

Don’t we all have quirky habits that help us write? One of mine is painting my nails. I don’t know why it helps, but I love to write when my nails are painted. I used to specifically paint my nails before writing a term paper and if I’m struggling to write painting my nails can help me feel more motivated. What quirky writing habits do you have?

While this writing routine definitely makes it easier for me to write, it doesn’t make my writing perfect. I still need to revise. Often and heavily. But this routine does help me write more regularly and it makes the writing process more enjoyable. I’m more motivated.

There are also definitely days when I can’t follow my routine.  Sometimes I don’t have time to go through my whole process. E.B. White said “A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word on paper.” I absolutely agree with this statement. Your writing routine should never keep you from writing at all. But the days I do make or find the time to follow my routine often turn out better than the days when I don’t follow my routine.

What does your writing routine look like? How do you keep yourself motivated to write?

Please follow and like:
error
2018-11-27T15:36:32-07:00By |Writing Lifestyle|8 Comments

About the Author:

8 Comments

  1. Juliana Tomasek May 23, 2017 at 5:35 pm - Reply

    As a new blogger, I have a feeling this routine will be very helpful! I shall test it out!

    • Shelby May 23, 2017 at 6:59 pm - Reply

      Juliana, I sure hope so! It’s something that’s made night and day difference for me…when I follow it!

  2. Troll May 23, 2017 at 7:27 pm - Reply

    That’s great that this works for you- but there was no effort put into this blog post. Did you consider research the scientific and psychological reasons why these steos make you so successful? Did you look into well published, career-writers’ routines? How can you be trusted as a writer if you fail to do even the most basic of research

    • Shelby May 23, 2017 at 10:22 pm - Reply

      I appreciate your honest feedback. From personal experience I know these steps work for me. However, I have since done a bit of research into other writers’ routines. I have found that writers have very different schedules indeed. I have updated my post to reflect what I have learned.

  3. Aleksandra May 25, 2017 at 2:52 pm - Reply

    Keeping everything distraction free is certainly my weakness. Will use these tips 🙂

    • Shelby May 25, 2017 at 4:45 pm - Reply

      Aleksandra, It is hard to stay distraction free. That’s probably one of the hardest parts. But definitely one that really helps me when I am able to avoid things I know distract me! I hope these tips help. Thanks for the comment.

  4. Marie @ Girl Knows Tech May 26, 2017 at 7:06 pm - Reply

    Hi! Found you through a Facebook group!

    Sometimes, I also take the time to write the headings and sub-headings of my blog posts before starting writing. When I get excited on a subject, I tend to write about everything all at the same time and all mixed up, so having headings helps me get the post organized right at the beginning! 🙂

    Loved these tips! 🙂
    Marie

    • Shelby May 26, 2017 at 7:09 pm - Reply

      Marie, I’m glad you found me! I love that advice. It’s kind of like outlining. Whether I’m writing my novel or a blog post, I definitely do better with a basic outline. Thanks for the comment!

Leave A Comment