Writing in short bursts

Do you ever find yourself with a little break between clients or appointments and that nagging feeling that you “should” use that time to work on your book? I’ve had clients ask me in the past how they can quickly get into the groove of writing if you only have 15 minutes to put pen to paper. Here are some tips to help you write in short bursts in those pockets of free time in a day.

Start with a plan

Before you start writing, take a minute or two to figure out what part of your outline you will implement in that session. Plan out what you want to say. This can help you stay focused and on track during your 15-minute writing session. Don’t have a rock-solid outline yet? Book an outlining session with me here.

Eliminate distractions

Turn off your phone, close your email, and do whatever you need to do to eliminate distractions during your writing time. If being unavailable for that short burst of time makes you panic, use a timer. Set a timer for 15 minutes and challenge yourself to write as much as you can in that time. This Pomodoro technique can help you stay focused and motivated and avoid burnout.

Write quickly

Don’t worry about getting everything perfect on your first try. I like to call this the Shitty First Draft for a reason. Instead of perfection lean into creativity, and focus on getting your ideas down on paper quickly. You can always go back and edit later.

Keep it simple

Don’t try to tackle a complex topic in 15 minutes. Instead, focus on a small, manageable aspect of your topic and try to write as much as you can about that in the time you have. It also helps to break down your book outline ahead of time into smaller chunks that you can tackle in shorter writing sessions.

Talk it out

Use your voice recorder on your phone or Voice to Text on Google Docs or Pages and dictate what you want to say in a section of your book. When you have a longer writing session planned you can go back to what you dictated edit it and elaborate on the topic.

Remember, even if you only have 15 minutes to write, every little bit counts. Books are merely a string of words in a string of sentences, paragraphs, and pages. By using these tips to get into the writing groove quickly, you can make the most of your limited writing time and make progress on your writing goals.

Do you have a tip on how to write effectively in short periods of time? Let me know what works for you. And if you are convinced that you write better in an immersive setting, don’t forget the writer’s retreat where you get to run away and write for a whole weekend.