Making the most of a limited timeframe

Fortunately, I'm not doomed when the sand runs out
Fortunately, I’m not doomed when the sand runs out

My schedule is probably a bit different than yours.

A job in broadcasting, getting around a large metropolitan city via bicycle or public transit, and escorting V to her numerous afterschool activities means not a lot of time to sit and write. Maybe a little over an hour a day. Maybe one and a half to two, if I’m lucky.

Since it’s all about getting stuff done, I’ve learned how to jam as much productivity as possible into that short window. Sometimes it’ll be “write until the end of this particular scene” or “crank out X number of pages.” Other times it might be “write until this point in time” or “write until you just can’t do it anymore”.

An hour may not seem like a lot of time to work with, but you work with what’s available.

Plus, setting up this kind of work habit is extremely beneficial on several levels:
-compels you to concentrate
-regular work pattern can improve skills and boost creativity
-problem-solving becomes easier and less necessary
-productivity may be slow, but remains steady
-that sense of accomplishment from having actually written something (very important)

These extremely unscientific results are how it’s worked out for me. I can’t speak for others, but I would imagine the results have been similar.

Find a system that works best for you, and keep at it. Make the commitment and stick with it. A few pages a day, and before you know it, you’ll be done.

Then you reset the clock and start all over again.

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