I have been trying to find ways to make myself more attentive to my writing habits (which have been dismal to be honest). I suffer from that perennial problem of procrastination and fear — fear of writing, fear of not writing, fear of having someone read my writing, etc.
Last week I read Billie Hara’s article on ProfHacker about 750words.com. I signed up. But then I decided not to do it. I wouldn’t go to the site every day. So how could I incorporate the same idea into my workflow in a way that works best for me?
I live on Google. Ok, not the planet Google, but the great spacious cloud of Google. I use many of the tools extensively, for nearly everything. Ack! I know. But I also backup, so never fear. :-) Anyway, I am always using my calendar, docs, etc. So how could I make them work for me in the same way that 750words works for others? I created a calendar event that emails me every morning, alerting to me to my time to write for 10 minutes (I picked 10 minutes to get me started — and I typically write about 500 words in that 10 minutes). I also use Docs to write in, so I can write from anywhere.
I called my brother and let him know so I’d be accountable. He suggested that this could be a good way to create reflections on my exams and dissertation (smart man, that guy) and that those reflections could turn into something else in the future.
I’ve also made my calendar public, just to hold myself more accountable. Once I’ve written for 10 minutes (and I downloaded a timewatch app on my Droid — yes, I just had to have the Droid involved! — to time myself, to make sure I did at least 10 minutes), I update my calendar to show that I did the writing.
And there it is. 10 minutes. Every day. I’m creating a habit. And a good one at that.