It’s important to have a writing process to remain disciplined, and since the stay at home orders, it’s been hard to maintain. In fact, if not for the due dates on my syllabus I’d have no clue about time and date.
From what I’ve seen, mine is not an isolated problem; a lot of writers are experiencing this. The hours and days all meld together and keeping track of time difficult. Personally, I haven’t seriously written much over the last six weeks.
The semester is over now though, and I’ve found that my brain is scattered and numb from lack of practice. So, I’ve created a simplified writing schedule with the understanding that in order for me to get into a creative groove, I need to start up again.
I’ve streamlined my process into just 3 steps. Here’s how I recapture that spark of inspiration and get stuff written:
STEP 1: Head to office
1 A. Can’t even find the keyboard. Gather up papers and stuff covering my desk.
1 B. Walk toward kitchen.
1 C. Hi there, Surya (my cat)! What’s that? You say you need treats? Well, okay. You can have one since you asked so nicely.
1 D. Get treats from pantry.
1 E. Surya runs into pantry and squeezes into the farthest corner.
1 F. Put bag of treats on table, grab Surya, close pantry door.
1 G. Another cat upsets the treat bag. Now there’s plenty for everyone all over the floor. I manage to clean up about half before they’ve scarfed it down.
1 H. What was I doing again?
1 I. Return to office, gather up the rest of the crumpled-up notepaper, expired magazines, junk mail, receipts. Head to kitchen again.
1 J. Room smells like fishy cat treats. Yuck. Clean entire kitchen.
1 K. I was about to do something. Oh, I remember. Head toward office.
1 L. “Aww, who’s a good girl?” Get on floor and plays with Daisy (golden retriever) for about five minutes.
1 M. Decide to get a little fresh air; take Daisy for walk, approximately 45 minutes.
1 N. What was I gonna do when I got back? Oh yeah, I remember, I was clearing off my desk to write.
1 O. Return to office, gather empty protein shake bottles, mugs, and wrappers from snacks.
1 P. Kitchen again. Consider a snack. Decide to watch weight instead. Down two glasses of water while making tea.
1 Q. Return to office with tea AND a snack.
1 R. Yawn. Naptime.
1 S. Up from nap. Now I’m ready to write! As I set my fingers on the keyboard, Husband and son come in and ask, “What’s the dinner plan?”
1 T. Argue with teenage son about:
(a)Finishing schoolwork after dinner
(b)Cleaning his bathroom
(c) Removing and washing all the clothes covering his bedroom floor.
1 U. Dinner.
1 V. Watch TV or play board game.
1 W. Return to office. Sit down to write. Finally!
1 X. Not so fast! Get up, yell from bottom of stairs, “Turn that video game off and do your schoolwork.”
1 Y. Return to office. Favorite Aunt calls. 90-minute conversation happens.
1 Z. 10 p.m. Getting tired.
STEP 2: Stare at computer screen again. Do I turn everything off and call it a day? Check e-mail and mess around on social media until guilt settles in.