We all have those little tasks that sneak in and at the end of the day make us smack our heads and mumble incoherently as we realise we never got them done. This is why we invented to-do lists and they do indeed kind of rock. At my old job I could walk into a room with office supplies and take anything I want. One of those things was a Things To Do Today day-planner which is basically a lot of to-do lists put together, all you have to do is fill them in. Hea-ven!
Having to make to-do lists is not fun, but these days I even make to-do lists with fun things on it. I tend to forget to do the things I want to do and just lazeball around. So in my to-do list I always incorporate breaks/rewards in between the boring tasks. The best thing about the list, apart from not forgetting the stuff that needs to be done, is that you feel super mega awesome when you get to tick off one of the things you’ve accomplished. It makes you feel the opposite of a lazeball. And that is a good feeling.
So if I may be so bold as to give advice…Use to-do lists like a crazy sock. Whether it be post-its or day-planners or just pieces of paper. They will make you feel like you are on top of it, whatever it may be. (Probably cheese, because cheese is awesome.) And don’t forget to include the fun things as well! Sometimes it helps to even note down times that you want to spend on it, so I for instance write down: 1 hour of writing, thirty minutes of watching Penguins of Madagascar, twenty minutes of blogging…etcetera. Setting a timer makes you feel less inclined to get distracted by shiny things on the mighty interweb.
Have fun being productive! Whoohoo!
I’m officially a (self-declared) cosy mystery writer so naturally my plan was to plot this whole son of a b*tch since mysteries involve carefully planted clues. I scribbled and scribbled and brainstormed until my brain hurt and eventually just started writing. That’s when things started flowing and I realised that maybe I shouldn’t try so hard to be something that I’m not. I always dive into my stories and see what happens. When I finished my first story, things came together in a way that my conscious hadn’t even realised yet. I always believed that the subconscious knew more and made connections even before I saw them, but the doubtful voice in my head said that such a thing was too easy and that I should plot like a ‘real’ writer. But lots of (famous) writers don’t plot. The writing process is a personal one. You have to decide what works for you.
That is why I’m declaring myself a loud and proud winger. Winger sounds weird. Non-plotter? Notter? No. Anyway, the only plotting I’ll be doing is during the formation of my world domination plans.
Right now the writing is going well and I’ve added a word count at the right top side of my shiny blog in case you are interested to follow the process of my latest cosy mystery. Before I tried to write one page a day, but in the last five days I’ve written six chapters! So now a chapter a day is my goal.
I’m just going to see where it goes. The subplot might need some fleshing out, but that is what second drafts are for! We go onwards! To the lair!