Production for a writer is key. Without producing your books, you have nothing that your readers can get their hands on to. Therefore getting your production levels to their best is paramount. Here are my tips to getting those levels high.
1. Get up Early
I start my writing day at 5 am every morning. If you follow my twitter account you can see days when at about 6:30 (when the rest of the household get up) I have achieved a lot. I aim to do at least 500 words each day at this time with an extra 1000 words throughout the rest of the day. This means it would only take me about a month to write 50,000 words. Getting up early can be difficult. But by doing so I am alone and free of distraction, meaning that some days I can write my daily target before I even have breakfast. Whereas in the evening I have people call me for chats, the wife wanting to discuss her day and kids who don’t want to go to bed. Its easy to see why I find it more productive in the morning.
2. Turn off the InternetThe internet is not a writer’s best friend at times. In fact it can be the enemy. If I feel particularly unmotivated for writing and would rather play on the internet; I turn off the modem. I’m not saying the internet is completely useless. It is great for research and for promotion. But it all has to be done in moderation.
3. Social MediaI am someone who is a firm believer in social media. It can be useful for promotion and keeping in contact and making new connections in the writing world. However I am a firm believer in using tools to make sure that you can do it easier and spend less time on it. For instance I use Hootsuite to manager my Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts. It allows me to plan when to post things and interact over a wide spectrum of social media without leaving one website. Plus I find Hootsuite easier to use than twitter. However I would caution of using social media anymore than 1/3 of your time. I plan to use it less than 20%, but some people prefer more spend while others prefer little or no time.
4. Getting your head out of your book from time to timeYou’ll be surprised that I would recommend not spending all your time at the computer typing. But I find that sometimes going for a walk gives me energy to keep going or even ideas. For instance I got an idea for a new book taking a walk down on the beach. When I get stuck I go for a walk in the countryside and by the time I get back I have normally sorted out my problems.
5. Reward your hard workSometimes the best thing to do is to give yourself a little present for doing well. But set a goal to do this. I always say that when I release a new book, I will have a Chinese to celebrate (I just love Chinese). Whatever your reward, make sure you get it only when you achieve your goal.
6. Time for teaThere is nothing better than having your favorite tipple. For me that is tea. But others enjoy coffee, coke or squash. Whatever it is that get you writing, use it.