Top Tips for Turning Procrastination into Productivity.

Procrastination

“If I waited till I felt like writing, I’d never write at all” – Anne Tyler

I woke up this morning to the sound of bird song. The sun was shining and for a moment, I forgot that I had a full day of writing planned out ahead of me. I needed to write 1,000 words today. That was my target and I knew I needed to stick with it. I should get on right away…or should I? Maybe I could go for a walk first? Or maybe I will just pop in on my friend for a quick chat? Before I knew it, the clock had struck twelve and today became yesterday. I had written precisely 0 words. I knew where I had gone wrong, I had been procrastinating. Everyone procrastinates, but how do you overcome it and become instantly more productive?

I have outlined some tips that are very helpful for beating procrastination. When implemented, I become instantly more productive and motivated to write. After implementing these today, I have ended up writing 2,500 words. So give them a go and get productive.

  • Set out clear goals – In order to get stuff done, you need to know what your doing. Write out clear instructions for yourself outlining what you want to get done that day. This doesn’t just have to include writing goals, it can include any task that needs to be completed. Writing out what you want to achieve for that day will help you focus on important tasks.

 

  • Write as soon as you can – I find that the downfall for all procrastinators is allowing yourself time to talk your way out of doing important tasks. Stop this from happening by starting your writing as soon as you wake up. Even if you just do half an hour of writing straight away this will help motivate you to continue working for the rest of the day instead of finding excuses not to do anything.

 

  • Don’t wait for inspiration – Sometimes there are days when you just don’t feel very creative. Everything you write just seems flat and you want to scrap it and start all over again. The problem is if you wait for inspiration to strike, it never will. Instead sit down and make yourself write your daily word count. Writing regularly will help inspire you and holds you accountable. Often, even if you have written something that you think is bad now, when you come to edit it you find it is not as terrible as you once thought. Remember it is easier to edit something that is a work in progress than a blank page.

 

  • Get rid of distractions – This is a very obvious thing to do, but still something I struggle to implement. It can be so tempting to check you phone r emails when you are supposed to be writing but trust me I tell you to resist the urge. Turning off my phone, social media and not allowing myself access to the internet can increase my productivity and reduce the likelihood for procrastination. Instead turn on some music that helps you focus and just write.

 

If you are procrastinating this very moment don’t beat yourself up about it. Make a plan and stick to it.  Let me know how you keep procrastination at bay? Like and Comment below and don’t forget to hit the follow button for more articles like this. Stay productive– you got this 🙂

 

 

Beginners Writing Tips – As Tried and Tested by Me.

 

Blank paper with pen and coffee cup on wood table

Currently I am still slogging my way through my first draft. It’s hard, but I’m getting there. Meanwhile, I’m reading any article that promises to give me the best advice on being an aspiring author. There is so much conflicting advice out there that I thought I would comprise a list of these top tips and my experience in implementing them. I have comprised a list of tips that were repeated across multiple platforms or that really stood out to me. Hopefully, this will shed some light regarding the supposed “crème de le crème” of writing advice.

Don’t think about success or failure, just write. – All amateur authors think about what success will be like. This definition of success will vary from writer to writer. Some will want publication, others recognition from peers. Whatever an author wants to achieve with their writing the most important thing thy can do is just write. I sadly admit that I too have fallen victim to the ongoing daydreaming sessions where I picture all the success my writing will acquire or equally how failure will ruin me. Then I look down and see an empty page and I realise that I have been doing nothing for the past fifteen minutes. So, although its tempting to sit and think about all the possible things that could happen should you attempt to write anything, please don’t be scared. Just write one-word at a  time and think only about that and your story.  Leave the ambition and worry until you have finished writing.

Don’t be too wordy – I am a serial offender of doing this. Equally, I know people who also underwrite and don’t use enough words. The advice is that after writing something, you should go through and think about if each word is necessary for the sentence/story to make sense. If it doesn’t, then cut it. Otherwise leave it in. Simple.

Over use of Exposition – This is one of my biggest pet peeves and possibly the single worst thing any writer can do. There is nothing worse than a writer over explaining an idea instead of leaving it to the readers imagination. I am not saying I have never done this when writing as I most certainly have. The important thing is to spot when you are doing this and take it out. Have faith in your own ability to convey the underlying message without shoving it in the readers face. If you are struggling to know where you are guilty of over exposition, ask a trusted friend to read it over and see what they think.

Read Everything – I disagree with this slightly in that you don’t need to read everything. I think you need to have read a mix of fiction and non-fiction but I don’t think you should read things for the sake of reading them. I am not ashamed to say that I have never read War and Peace nor that I ever intend to do so  because this is not a book I am interested in. Despite it being a classic that people say you have to read I think you should mainly read what you enjoy. If a certain book is not for you then don’t feel as though you have to plough through simply because it’s the book of the century or whatever. The same goes for writing as well. Write about what you want to write about, not what you think will impress others.

Write it for yourself – Again, this is a writing tip that I very much agree with. Don’t write what you think will sell or what other would like to read. Write a book that you want to read. The chances are that if you want to read it, others will too.

Write what you know – Ok, so this is one tip I very much disagree with. I think that it is boring to write about what you know. This being said, if you are a very interesting person who has lead a very interesting life or you just want to share your story with the world then go for it. It can also be fun to take something you do know, like going to school and adding elements that you have not experience such as goblins and meld them together. Personally, what makes writing fun for me is exploring new worlds and ideas that I haven’t encountered before in my day to day life. I read books as a form of escapism. The same goes for writing. When I write I want the possibility’s to be limited only by my imagination. Although I may base some things on what I know, most of it comes from the fantasy world inside my head. So, if you want to write about a goblin school or people with super powers, then go for it. Don’t be scared to write about the unknown.

Enjoy what you do – This is something I very much agree with. If you don’t like and enjoy writing then, obviously, you shouldn’t be doing it. When I write about something, it is because I am passionate and interested in the theme and message contained within it. It’s often a topic or character trait I am trying to work through or figure out for myself. However, I don’t think this means it needs to be easy. You can enjoy writing whilst still finding it hard. Also, to all the people out there who don’t write because they become paralysed with the fear that everything thy write will be bad, it won’t be. I have seen people write utter drivel and then transformed it into something beautiful. Next time you find yourself pulling your hair out over your writing, take a break and write something else more fun in the meantime.

I found most f these tips very helpful, and these are just the most common ones. There is loads of advice out these for beginner writers that anyone can utilise to make their writing better.

If you can think of other common writing tips for beginners that you have tried out let me know what they are in the comments. Below is also a list of websites that I used to find these tips in order to work out what the most common advice was.

https://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/10-tips-for-beginning-writers/#

https://selfpublishingadvice.org/writing-tips-for-beginners/

https://projectlifemastery.com/writing-tips-for-beginners/

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/may/13/so-you-want-to-be-a-writer-colum-mccanns-tips-for-young-novelists

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Also, to anyone else still writing their first draft like me – you got this! Keep writing and remember to try and have fun with it. 😊

Once upon a time…I wrote a book.

“The scariest moment is always just before you start”- Stephen King.

Close-up Photo of White and Black Journal

First of all, let me introduce myself. My name is Chloe and I am an aspiring author and, (surprise surprise), I have decided to write and publish a book.

Like many aspiring authors, I have a plethora of worries and concerns about writing. Will my book be good? How will I motivate myself to finish it? What if people laugh and ridicule me? I’m afraid that I wont know the answer to any of these questions until I have done it. Putting my writing out there makes me very vulnerable to failure and criticism which, to be frank, terrifies me.

However, the one thing I am certain I will regret is never trying and I fear that if I don’t do this now I never will. Even if my book is considered bad and people hate it at least I will be able to say I have written a book.

So I have started this blog to accompany my writing journey. I will be posting all the tips, tricks and advice that I pick up along the way as a beginner author. This is partially to help motivate me to keep writing, but I also hope to inspire others to start their writing journey as well.

I will be posting new content every Monday, so feel free to subscribe and receive notifications about new posts via email.