I've spent most of January so far trying to find that balance between writing, the day job, and what I need to decompress. Some days, it's just finding time to write. Using the Bullet Journal has been a big help.
Everyone writes different, they have different rituals, different comforts, different environmental needs, different habits. And those change over time.
Sometimes what I need in the way of environment changes - one day it may be my desk, another at Barnes and Noble or a coffee shop. I always need something to drink, but sometimes eating doesn't happen at all, or I'll need chocolate or crunchy, or everything in sight. But, I've found while I like writing with people around - like during write-ins, or finding a corner during a conference to write with whoever sits down, I like my space. I don't like to be too crowded. And I write best in fifteen minute increments. So, even if I'm do a 1k in 1hr challenge, I still break it up into 15-minute increments. My friend Brynn Paulin shared this story about a prolific writer named Anthony Trollope who wrote in 15-minute increments for 3 hours before going to a day job. I find I can waste a lot of time if I have an hour to write. But, 15 minutes - I'm less likely to procrastinate. So, I may write for an hour, but I've done in 15-minute spurts.
With my Bullet Journal, I created a couple of different spreads - one is my Sprint Log
I use my Sprint Log to track the date I work on a specific project, the starting and ending word count of each round, and the difference. My goal is 250 words each round. I use the timer feature on my laptop to keep track. I like it, because it interrupts the music - either from iTunes or YouTube - I'm listening to.
Set up - top of Spread
Both pages. I write the abbreviation for each title at the bottom.
The other spread I have is a word count tracker. Coloring in the boxes feels like an accomplishment - that I'm one step closer to my Goal. Each of my active WIPS has a layout. Each square is 1,000 words, and each of the smaller squares inside it are 250 words.
So, my goals the last time I posted them were 500 words per session, writing 5 times a week. Or 2,500 words in a week. Carrying that from the week of the 9th over to the week of the 16th, that would be 5,000 words total. Now, I didn't write 5 times a week. I wrote 5 times total, BUT I did manage to write 7,018 words since the 9th.
My other goal was 2 hours of research and world building. Carrying that over from the 9th to the 16th, that would 4 hours. I totally didn't make that one. At all.
Goals this week are the same.
1. Write 500 words per session, 5 days a week.
2. 2 hours of Research/world building - Forbidden
It's always when I need to be doing something else that I feel the drive to write. I need to sit down and write even when I don't have the drive.