Monday, December 24, 2012

Five Ways to Write During the Holidays

The holiday season always throws me off my writing game.

I love to cook. I love to eat. I believe holidays should involve several food comas.

When do I squeeze in writing?

Whenever I can.

Five Ways to Squeeze in Writing During the Holidays:

5. Brainstorm in the shower

No matter what's on the celebration agenda, you have to have at least one shower a day. Why not use that time to brain storm your current writing project?

This week, I plan to brainstorm every day, to come up with a rocking premise for Tesseracts 17.

4. Go for a walk

More specifically, go for a walk and bring your phone. Use the sound note recording feature to write while you're on the walk. You can find time to transcribe the details later.

Remember the food coma? Well if you don't go for the occasional walk, you're going to gain a billion pounds by the end of the holidays.

3. Exploit your captive audience

Last week, I suggested you read your comedy aloud to your guests to see how well the jokes fly. Reading aloud is always a good idea. Sometimes you'll get more ideas about how to edit, and you might even notice the occasional glaring error.

Not that you, or I, have any of those glaring errors. Right? :)

I've been working on a particularly nightmarish story for Night Terrors III and I hope to read it aloud to my guy during the break..

2. Submit a story before 2012 ends

If you're like me, you probably have one story that's ready (or a couple of reads away from ready) to send back out. And you'll feel better about your submission rate if you send out one more before the year is out.

I always find that submitting a story awakens my writing muse, and I almost always want to scribble down a few ideas, or a story start right after. Use this submission exercise to get the juices flowing and meet your hundred word daily quota.

Remember that story I'm going to read aloud and then send along to Night Terrors III? Well their deadline is January 1, 2013. So I'll either sub the story before Dec 31st to increase my submission count, or use it as a first sub for 2013.

And the number one way to make time to write during the holidays:

1. Make writing time your present to yourself

You know the scene. Everyone's ripping open presents and showing off their cool stuff. And if you have kids, they likely want to immediately play with said cool stuff. That's when you cash in one of your time-to-write cards

What are these cards?

Write down the words "I will write uninterrupted for one hour" on ten cue cards/old Christmas cards, or whatever using a BIG BLACK MARKER. Then wrap the cards and place them under the tree, with To: Your Name From: Santa on the gift tag.

Once I'm done posting this blog entry, I'm making up the cards and putting them under my tree.


Trust me, the more time you make for writing, the less guilty you'll feel by the end of the season.

And even if you only use one of those ten cue cards, you'll have the other nine to help you have a fresh start in 2013.

Do It Now:
Make those ten cue cards, wrap them, and get them under the tree. (Of course, if you don't celebrate Christmas, there won't be a tree, but you can still give the present to yourself in a non-Christmas/Christian manner.)

Start thinking about your writing resolutions for 2013.

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