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Ideas to Get You Writing Every Day

by Jennifer on September 1, 2009

By Jennifer Blanchard

You’ve probably heard this advice time and time again: If you want to be a writer, you have to write everyday.

Well, I’m here to tell you…it’s true.

If you want to be a writer, you need to write as often as possible, which is why you should make it your goal to write every single day, no exceptions.

Now you’re probably having all the same thoughts start to pop up in your mind: “I can’t write everyday.” “I don’t have time to write everyday” “I’m too busy to write everyday.” “I won’t be inspired everyday.”

Stop right there.

You can write everyday.

You don’t have to write fiction everyday (unless you want to). You don’t have to write ten pages everyday (unless you want to). You don’t have to write one chapter everyday (unless you want to).

You just have to commit to writing something everyday. Whether that be notes for your newest novel, a scene in your screenplay or 1,000 words of a short story.

Here are some ideas to get you started writing everyday:

  • Write in 10-Minute Blocks—In line at the grocery store, during your lunch break, in place of watching a TV show…for more 10-minute time block ideas, read: 17 Ways to Find 10 Minutes to Write.
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  • Morning PagesJulia Cameron, author of the best-selling book, The Artist’s Way, created Morning Pages, which she says are: “Three pages of longhand, stream of consciousness writing, done first thing in the morning. There is no wrong way to do Morning Pages—they are not high art. They are about anything and everything that crosses your mind—and they are for your eyes only.”Morning Pages are a great way to get all the “junk” out of your mind, making a clearing for your writing.By writing your Morning Pages, you will be getting out all the thoughts, worries, fears, doubts, angers, etc., that cloud your writing. This can help you become unblocked, leaving you wide open for creativity.Give Morning Pages a try. You’ll be surprised how effective they are, especially if you do them immediately after you wake up.
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  • Have a Word Count in Mind—Commit to writing a certain number of words everyday. It doesn’t matter if it’s 500 words or 5,000 words, as long as you write. This method can also work with a daily page count.
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  • Use the Write Everyday Productivity Tool–I had this tool built so procrastinating writers could have a simple, effective way to write every single day. Choose a time limit and allow the random writing prompt to inspire you. No excuses.

Keep in mind these are just ideas. There are plenty of other ways to write everyday. As long as you commit to doing so, how you do it doesn’t really matter.

In my experience, the above-mentioned ideas are four of the most effective ways to build a habit of writing everyday.

Keep in mind, not every method will work for every writer, that’s why experimenting is necessary. Each week, give one daily writing method a try and after a few weeks, you’ll know which methods work for you and which don’t. This will help you continue to be productive and write.

Don’t Forget to Take a Break
Writing everyday—although very important—can be difficult at first. In order not to burn out, you should give yourself a break. Take one day off each week from writing.

Now remember, this is only a suggestion. If you feel like taking a day off would ruin your momentum, by all means write seven days a week.

But you need to make sure you still have fun activities in your life. You need to make sure you still spend time with your family and friends. You need to make sure you have time for work and errands and everything else in your life.

Writing doesn’t have to be your whole life, but it should be part of your daily life.

Do you write everyday? How do you go about doing it?

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Larry September 2, 2009 at 8:06 am

Couldn’t agree more. Some writers just need to make a daily commitment, others need a strategy to bring them back to the keyboard daily. All of us come up dry sometimes, so one effective way to cover this base is to commit to “tinkering” with your work daily, which should lead you to actually writing. If you’ll just open the file on your latest project, even if its just notes that help you sort out what you’re writing next, and then simply massage your sentences and luxuriate in what you’ve already accomplished, your mind will tug on you to add more. Whatever gets you in front of the keyboard is a good thing. Happy writing!

2 mmvhamilton September 5, 2009 at 9:30 pm

Besides keeping a journal, I found 100words.com a while back. The object is to write exactly 100words everyday, no more no less. Did great things for my writing. I learned about rhythm, about editing, and even tried complete stories. I think my most successful run was based on a theme.
The best thing about the process was the limit. I found myself chomping at the bit to say more while honoring my intent. I used the limit to explore technique, craft, thinking. After a while, when life proposed to keep me busier than ever, I would write several “days” posts at once. Instant word count! And the speed! I haven’t done the work for a while, but it’s still my favorite writing practice. I still pay close attention to how I post responses. Oh and Twitter benefits also!

Definitely a tool to be recommended!
(I’m meham on 100words.com)

3 jennifer blanchard September 7, 2009 at 12:09 pm

@mmvhamilton Thanks for sharing 100words.com with us! I’m always interested in the tools writers use to get their writing done. I will definitely be checking that site out.

4 Stormy September 9, 2009 at 8:15 pm

I found that once writing every day became a habit, it was easy to keep writing every day. It didn’t seem like a sacrifice or a hassle at all and now I actually have a hard time NOT writing every day. NaNoWriMo got me started in the habit and it just continued from there!

5 Eric J. Krause September 27, 2009 at 11:30 am

No doubt that if you write everyday it becomes habit. I find that if you take even two days off in a row, it’s harder to get back into the habit. I almost always write 6 days a week, and this works for me. 7, of course, is better, but life doesn’t always allow that. I set my weekly writing goal at 6 days, and I always give myself a daily writing goal, which is about 1000 words (I write longhand, so I estimate on the word count).

6 Sunny January 18, 2010 at 1:11 am

Its is great post. Happened to visit your blog today. I am sure, I will be coming back to read more

7 Melody Calhoun March 7, 2010 at 10:46 pm

Writers definately need to dedicate small snippets of time throughout each day to their writing. Even if I am just jotting down tiny notes of ideas, I feel that this helps me to keep my creative juices flowing. Also, I will write down some Bible verses that strike me, move me, touch me in a journal, or a notebook, or a torn off piece of paper. Then I can go back to my notes and verses later and see if I am further inspired. Thanks for the insight! MC

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