Outtakes 89


By Cait Collins

There are times when no matter how hard I try, I cannot shift from my day job to my job as a writer. Long hours, stress, and continued interruptions can and will disrupt concentration and creativity. Just because the new pages don’t come does not mean a writer shouldn’t use writing time productively. These are my suggestions.

  • Free write. Turn off your internal editor and write non-stop for ten to fifteen minutes.
  • Write one long sentence. Use pen and paper. Select a topic such as “My first date was…” Do not use any punctuation. Instead use conjunctions and connectors: and, but, so, then, so then, when, neither/nor, either/or, and so, because, etc. Write for five minutes.
  • Use your writing time to edit previous chapters or sections in another project. You can accomplish a lot in half an hour.
  • Work a crossword puzzle. It’s a good way to work on your vocabulary and spelling.
  • Do research for your project. By using this down time to fill in the blanks, you will not need to interrupt your creative process later.
  • Catch up on email, submission follow up, and social media. It’s also a good time to update your website and author page.

These are just a few suggestions for keeping your scheduled writing time productive. Down time should never be lost time.

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