The Writing Life Routine

Posted on January 8, 2013 in Blog | 0 comments

My day has always begun with a cup of coffee. I admit… I’m a coffee snob. I have one particular bean I love that comes from a small shop in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and I make sure I have enough on hand at all times. I wake up, I hit the coffee pot. That’s pretty much it in a nutshell. It’s the only way I’m coherent enough to get started!

My routine used to be coffee, sit down and write. Because I wake up so early to get started and don’t want to wake the hubby, I don’t even change out of pajamas. The only problem is, more times than not, I’m still in pjs at 2:00 in the afternoon! I have found myself getting stiffer, fatter, and crankier with age and with my quite unhealthy routine.

I’ve decided to change that up. Yes, I still hit the coffee pot, but first I down a 16 oz glass of water to help flush fluids out. After being asleep for several hours, a nice glass of water helps get the digestive system going and it supposedly helps with losing weight. Because I don’t like a shower when I first wake up, I’ll take my coffee and spend about 20 to 30 minutes in the Word. It’s amazing how ordered your day becomes when you get your priorities straight. I used to read my Bible whenever I had a few moments (which was never!). Instead of sticking God in somewhere between writer’s block and supper, I decided He needed to start my day. He needs to be number one on my list.

After my time with God, I go ahead and do a few stretches, catch a shower, and get dressed. During the day, I’ll get up, walk around, stretch, or do something for a few minutes¬†every hour or so while I’m writing or editing. It’s not just to keep my body somewhat limber–it’s also to keep my brain from sizzling as well. A little diversion every hour or so will greatly improve your work.

standup_desk_0028Another thing that has helped me is a stand up desk that I use with my laptop, alternating with my regular desk and desktop computer. It’s amazing how much clarity of thought comes when you can pace and think at the same time. I go back and forth between it and my regular desk, transferring and working on files through a jump drive. It helps keep the blood circulating in my legs and keeps my bottom from going numb! I have also found that when I hit writer’s block on whatever I’m working on, that getting up and pacing helps get the creative juices going again.

Your writing routine may be different than mine, but getting into a routine is the first step to writing success. Be sure to allow for time to take a break, eat, and exercise (even if it’s just walking to the mailbox and back). Don’t neglect your time spent in the Word and prayer. Don’t neglect your family or friends (it’s easier to do than you think, especially when your writing muse goes into overdrive!) Keep all things in order and perspective, and watch your writing life flourish!

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