Everybody’s Working For The Weekend–But You Don’t Have To!

Now Brewing: Cory Collections Sequoia Dark. This is what my office is currently brewing. It is similar to the dark roasts you can find at Starbucks or other large scale coffee houses but what I truly enjoy about it is that it doesn’t leave my mouth begging for gallon’s of water afterwards. I’m not a huge dark roast fan because of the aftertaste and effects (hello, thirsty!) but this brew didn’t have the effect as much. For office coffee–not bad!

With this week’s post I’m proud to unveil Weast of Eden’s new look. I have been craving to learn more about blogging, so last night I participated in a Tweetchat with one of my industry’s most ambitious grads, @thePRwoman. She hosted last night’s chat, which was all about blogging, and the conversations I participated in and tips others shared inspired me to take this blog further.

Our official site is now WeastofEden.com and I am dedicated to writing weekly posts from now on. I hope to feature other writers’ journeys as I have in the past and will continue to share tips as well as unique content on my own writing. I look forward to connecting with more of you writers and am always looking for feedback so feel free to reach out to me. I will be expanding Weast of Eden to social media platforms in the coming months, but in the meantime, please connect with me on LinkedIn or follow me on Twitter for more updates.

Since we’re in the tail end of the work week and it seems like everyone in my office is chomping at the bit to make it to Friday, it’s hard to find the time to dedicate to my writing. It is typically like this most days actually—everybody’s working for the weekend; but how do you get writing done in the meantime?

Although I am working full time for the first time in almost two years, I have found this summer to be one of my most productive in many years. I’ve struck a balance between work and my writing that has allowed me to remain both productive at work and creative in my writing.

The following are 5 tips that I’ve used this summer to keep myself from falling victim to writer’s work block (or the phenomenon of a writer with far too much to do and no time for writing).

  1. Pick a daily time that you can devote to your writing. This time can be flexible or set in stone, but the point is to set at least 15 minutes a day aside to write. Even if you just scribble down a couple rough sentences, you’re being productive. If you continue to wait until you have a spare minute, that minute may never come and you’ll lose out on that great idea you had earlier.
  2. Always be prepared. If you’re a writer of any sort, chances are you’ve had an idea come to you at an inconvenient time (in rush hour or in the shower for example), so it is imperative to have tools ready to jot your idea down as soon as you can. If the old school pad of paper method isn’t your style, using your phone’s built-in note taking app or similar apps like Evernote and iAWriter, can assure that when the inspiration strikes—you’re ready.
  3. Pick your soundtrack. I’m a huge believer in the power of music and its influence on the writing process. Check out my post “The “Write” Inspiration—Music “ for more information and in the meantime, create a playlist with at least 15 minutes worth of songs that inspire or motivate you. If you can punch out words in beat with the music for those 15 minutes, you’ll fall into your writing groove soon.  You can also add songs that relate to something you’re writing about. It’s also a fun way to get into your characters heads’ by thinking about what songs they’d listen to.
  4. Listen to conversations at the water cooler. This scenario may not play out just like a scene from The Office in most cases, but chances are—there’s someplace in your work setting that you can overhear a couple co-workers chatting. Listen in on their conversations and try to imagine your characters in a similar situation that they’re talking about or listen for phrases you could use. A lot of my writing reflects on conversations I’ve had or overheard and most fiction writers do rely on their personal situations to build their characters and their stories—so next time you’re walking past the office kitchen, listen in for a few seconds—it just might be worth your while.
  5. Perfect the art of writing with noise. Easier said than done, I know. I will always write better at my desk with my music playing softly, but as life gets busier (and I work fulltime), finding the time to write in that capacity isn’t always easy. The best thing I’ve done for myself is learning to write through the background noise at work (think phones ringing, multiple conversations and clicking of keyboard keys from the cubicles around me). Although I still prefer writing in my own space because I have learned to write through the noise, I get a nice break from the daily tasks at work and still can move forward with my writing while I’m at the office. It’s not much—but just those extra 15 minutes a day that I’ve allotted has helped me feel much more productive with my second novel than I would be if I only wrote on the weekends—in the quiet, when it was handy.

Writing doesn’t always have to be a chore and I’ve found that breaking my writing into smaller time chunks this summer has truly inspired me to devote more time to the project. Knowing that I’d be working fulltime this summer and not having much free time outside of work, I was very cautious about starting another novel—but I’m so glad I did. Learning how to beat writer’s work block has been so beneficial to my writing that I’m proud to say—I’m not just working for the weekend to do my writing anymore.

If you liked these tips and would like more inspiration, check out these:

25 Insights On Becoming A Better Writer

Enjoy your weekend (whether you spend it writing or not!)

Kathryn E. Weast

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