Friday, November 26, 2010

Keeping the Habit

Just in case any of you have decided not to fight the Black Friday crowds, this one's for you:

Last week I talked about breaking bad writing habits. I've had a great week and am in a positive frame of mind, so I wanted to talk about good writing habits.

One of my most effective writing tricks is to work from an outline, even an rough list of bullet points I want to make sure to cover within the text. This works especially well if the topic is a bit boring and I can't get psyched about it (hey, it happens) or there's a lot of information worth discussing and I want to be sure to hit the highlights. I'm also usually pressed for time when I sit down to write, so an outline helps to keep me focused and less overwhelmed.

I've also started using a calendar to track all of my deadlines, assignments, and to-do lists, which has been a tremendous help. This helps me plan my time so I know what needs to be done, and when.

I'm constantly working on developing better ways to track time and stay organized, but these are the biggies that have worked for me.

What about you? What are some of your best writing habits?


  1. I use the bullet point list for short stories, and I used it for the first time this NaNoWriMo. I think it really helped... and it also didn't make me feel hedged in, like a full outline has in the past. But it helped with focus. I'm hoping I can turn this into one of my best writing habits :)

  2. Faith--That's great. I've found that even a very basic outline (even something that's closer to a bullet list) helps a lot! I have some very rough ideas for a few long-lingering fiction projects, so I need to get them into some kind of order. I'm hoping the outline will be helpful there, too!