I’m writing a lot. And I mean a lot. I’ve been thinking about this for a few weeks now as I move into the fifth month of this blogging venture (I always hear a pirate’s voice in my head when I type that word…). While it has been a challenge and beneficial to my writing muscles (buffing out!), I am not one of those writers who works well at scheduling a “writing time” every day. I thought I’d kind of use today’s blog post to explain how I remain sane and not burnt out.
Some writers have put themselves on a strict schedule in order to keep writing and finish what they set out to do. I commend this discipline and think it is of great benefit to finish whatever story you start. Kudos amigos! I, however, am in a bit of a different canoe than these folks. I have finished novellas and books and have added short stories and flash fiction pieces to my mantle. I’m very proud of this but I’m discovering that I work best by scheduling my writing with some slack.
I strongly recommend writers (this applies elsewhere too) to find a hobby or two that is not related to the art and/or creative outlet they partake in. I definitely used to play video games as a hobby or pastime but that has since become difficult for me for reasons I cannot nail down quite yet (if I do engage in the old Playstation and/or Xbox break, I can only play for an hour at most otherwise, I feel I’ve wasted too much time of my time). For me, I’ve found that playing music not only helps me be creative (drumming especially allows me to be creative) but keeps me entertained just as much as videogames. Also, and not many people know this about me but I’m a sports fan and a collector of sportscards and have been for most of my life. It’s a hobby I enjoy and allows me to take breaks when necessary, being part of a distinct online community.
This is all not to say I don’t have a schedule for writing. I do but it’s fluid. I work on blog posts every day, writing or revising, and planning ahead but I also work on upcoming flash fiction, short stories, and the Ravanguard novellas and novels. I like to have this wheel of projects to choose from because I don’t feel bogged down. However, if I was working on the first novella or novel of the Ravanguard series, then I’d be focused completely on that. I’m further along in the process, so I don’t feel the rush or need to devote all of my effort on that one project.
Sanity is key. I believe in pace when writing and I believe in letting yourself have other interests otherwise you will get burned out. I’m not convinced that if I did it differently that I’d be the same writer I am today. To each their own but my own is a way of marathon runner. I applaud sprinters but I wave as they pass me by.
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