2/20/12

Writing Pep Talk, part 2

As sure as hungry mice eat cookies, when you sit down to write, you’ll get distracted. It’s inevitable. Grab yourself a pen and pad of paper to keep next to the computer while you write. When something random pops into your head, go ahead and jot it down. Then let it go with confidence, knowing you can come back to it later because you’ve written it down. Don’t worry, there’s no way you’ll forget this list. It will practically scream your name the very moment you start typing again. Turn on some music to drown it out. You may even have to start out your writing session with five minutes of list jotting because you’ll have five or six things in your head automatically. Go ahead, it’s okay. Give yourself those five minutes to validate the nagging and perhaps it will quiet down. Or, perhaps when you’ve finished and you see those things in black and white you’ll think these are important things and they need to be done now. Yes, they are important, but no, they do not need to be done right this minute. This minute is the time you’ve set aside for writing. Believe me, the list, and all the items on it, will be there when you finish. Give yourself and your writing this chance, to be a priority. And turn the music up again if you need it.

At this point, you may need to refer to our first pep talk again. It’s a little warm-up I like to think of as scraping the skin off the top of the soup. There’s a lot of good stuff in your pot, but you’re gonna have to peel away the slime first. Especially if it’s been a few days since your last writing session. Sometimes it’s good to go to the last paragraph you wrote and read and revise it. But don’t get caught up in revising the entire piece, unless of course it’s finished and you have a deadline approaching. If you’re beginning something brand new, try to remember the song playing in your head when you woke up this morning, or whatever it is that you dreamed about the night before. Find the song in your Itunes list and push play, or start describing the last scene you remember from your dream. If you’re really stuck, pull up your favorite music video on YouTube. But only watch it one time then get back to work. 'Cause chances are, if you pay too much attention to all those distractions, you're not going to get any writing done. 

Part 3 coming soon...

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