Reverb10 – The Way I Write

2010 December 2
by Grace Boyle

This is day two in the month long #Reverb10 that I am participating in (along with hundreds of others). Each day I will be either posting here, tweeting or Tumblr-ing my answer to the prompt in order to reflect and manifest for the future.

Prompt: Writing. What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing — and can you eliminate it?

In the last few months, with a full-time job, two blogs, my life, my yoga, my everything I simply had to find a way to streamline my writing and organize my inspiration. I knew I would crumble if I didn’t figure something out.

It’s easy to get distracted and it’s easy to write halfway…not give it your all. But that isn’t me.

Now, I have committed to picking 1-2 days a week that are my writing days.

Throughout the week I keep pages of notes and inspiration that I know I want to write about. I save them for typically, my Sunday afternoons. I spend 2-3 hours writing a handful of blog posts. I have learned, as a writer, that you can’t always just write when you want to write. Typically, my inspiration comes at inopportune times (I still write then, if I can) but I have learned to be organized.

I am an inspiration, creative, spontaneous type. Nothing about me is ritualistic or logical. I have mixed a little practicality to my wild creative side and it works wonderfully. I still write when I want, but I know that one day exists for me, my computer, a cup of tea and my thoughts.

Choosing one day to write most of my posts has opened up my week, ensured that posts actually go up weekly (I committed that to myself/readers) and finally, I get peace of mind and time to myself throughout the rest of the week.

I could always do without The Food Network, Facebook and the thousands of blogs that exist out there for my distractions but really, when it comes down to it, I don’t really mess around.

What about you? What takes away from your writing? What do you wish to eliminate or add more of?

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  • Matt Cheuvront

    I’m very much the same way, Grace. Or at least, I used to be. I used to be VERY ritualistic with my writing, and, like you, Sunday afternoons were typically prime writing time. Now, though, I find that I am much more “spontaneously” inspired – the urge to write comes at the most random times – when I see something, while eavesdropping (unintentionally, of course) on a conversation at a coffee shop – I’ve become much more spontaneous in when I write and how I write.

    I don’t think either is a bad thing – but if we’re focusing on obstacles to overcome – Writing can honestly get in the way of writing. As much as it helps to write when you’ve got the urge – sometimes the best stuff is written down in a Moleskine and revisited at the end of the week with a fresh perspective.

    Great post – hope you’re doing great out in CO. Looking forward to more #reverb10 goodness from you!

  • Grace Boyle

    Hey Matt!

    Well, it’s not ritualistic because I still find those crazy snips of newspapers, napkins in my pockets with scribbled notes, I have the inspiration I never “force” posts, I just have so many ideas. I make time for it and IRONICALLY, I am busier than I have ever been.

    I’m pretty spontaneous, so this has been challenging but my traffic has grown rapidly and with consistency I come to trust myself and same with readers.

    I think you should still write when inspiration hits. I still have to. I also have learned to write with more vigor, so I don’t spend hours on a blog post. I’ll just bust it out because boom, it’s right there. But like most authors, they have a book or it’s their livelihood so you have to write. You can’t just not. Overcoming the writers block is pretty invigorating :) Thanks for popping by.

  • Matt Cheuvront

    I’m the same way – and that’s the focus of my post today – that I’ve learned to shoot from the hip and as you say “right with more vigor”. The best usually comes out when you don’t focus on AP Style, when you’re not focused on necessarily crafting the perfect post – but are instead focused on speaking your mind and showing emotion and passion in your writing. Those words are ultimately much more effective (at least in my opinion) than someone who’s writing every post as if it were a formal essay…

  • Rebecca

    Oh, I so love this! Thank you for sharing your wisdom with me!! I am just starting to take my new blog seriously, and get back to writing like I used to, and finding a mechanism to organize it amongst the rest of my life has been a huge hold up!! Thank you!! :) I am so going to apply this starting NOW! :)

  • Kristin Gast

    I try to do this, using things like Delicious to bookmark interesting posts, articles, images, etc. However, I should probably jot down more formal thoughts and ideas to help make that writing process even easier!

  • Grace Boyle

    Woah, you used to focus on AP Style? 😉

    Yeah, I guess I don’t know how else to write but to speak from my mind with emotion and passion. But that’s the beauty of it, we all have such different ways of expressing ourselves and how that comes out. We all share the medium, but it is what makes for diversity!

    Here’s to a little more informal then!

  • Grace Boyle

    You’re welcome, Rebecca! Somehow, this has worked for me. I’m far from Type A but it guaranteed I could still write and also continue my blog. Doing something habitually for over two years is a lot for me (e.g. this blog) so I want to keep it up because of the joy it brings.

    Good luck and let me know if I can help anymore!

  • Matt Cheuvront

    Haha come on now, Grace. You read my early stuff – was it anywhere near AP Style? 😉

    And yes, cheers to being a little more informal!

  • Grace Boyle

    Kristin – Delicious is great. I am bookmarking via Delicious EVERYDAY. I really gain inspiration from other bloggers too, it’s a great way to feed off of each other and also help each other out. Thanks for stopping by and good luck with the writing process.

  • Chelsea Talks Smack

    Totally with you on inspiration coming at inopportune times- TOTALLY.