At February’s Collab Writers meet up, I was asked by one of our members how to make writing regular. He needed help to make his writing a habit, like going to the gym.
I’ve blogged previously with tips that I find useful to make time in our busy lives to create. Collab Writers also published a series of ‘creative apprenticeship’ blogs. Many accomplished writers have written non-fiction books about this too. You can find links to the works that have helped me in my blogs.
Make creating the new ‘brushing your teeth’
Would you dream of leaving the house or going to bed without brushing your teeth?
Ok, don’t answer that if it’s a ‘no’. Even if you don’t, you know you should. And, you also feel so much better when you do. You feel clean, it’s one of those many things that you can tick off your list. It’s just one of those things you do and barely think about it. The ideal would be to put your ‘creative’ endeavour, be it writing, drawing, filmmaking into that category of a must do every day.
Better still, whilst there is a way to brush your teeth, there is no set way to create or write. It’s completely free form. You can do what the hell you like. What’s not to love and you don’t even need to use toothpaste.
Make ‘creating’ your new ‘gym membership’
2018 statistics record 10 million people with gym membership across the UK. Wow! My guess is many of us spend at least 5-10 hours in a gym a week, some many more. Most people do this to keep fit and make ourselves look and feel good.
Can you imagine the library of creativity we would have if those people spent the equivalent or even half of that time creating! As a comparator, in my collaborative writing with Anjali, I spent approximately 40 minutes a day writing, five days a week. By my calculation, that’s less than four hours a week and within a year we had written a first draft of a book together.
And, I like to leave the best to last. Writing is FREE, absolutely FREE. So drop those weights, have a run outside, come home pick up your pen or open your lappie or Ipad and WRITE.
Record your creative nuggets when they come to you – you never know when you’ll use them!
Often when we are out and about we get ideas. Write those particles of gold dust down. You never know when you can use them. Anything you write or create needs to go through a period of digestion. It doesn’t come to you fully formed, you need to sleep on it and let it percolate.
Collabathon Leap Challenge
Our member who asked about tips for making time to write, suggested it would be a good idea if Collab Writers could have a regular meet up (in addition to our monthlies) to create individually and together.
It got me thinking that it would be an amazing idea if we could all come together virtually to create. The benefit of a virtual meet up is that those outside of London and the UK can also take part. They say there is power in numbers. Like collaboration, just having people around you doing the same thing, encourages you to do the same.
If you are interested we will be holding a Collab Writers Collabathon virtually on 29 February 2020. Rather than pinning you down to a particular hour, we are giving you the option to pick any hour of the 24 on that date to spend creating.
Here’s how it works:
Find a collaborator by posting #Collabathon on Twitter.
Start writing a story on Twitter and see if anyone wants to continue it, Consequences-style (you write a line or two and someone continues it) #Collabathon #Collaboration #Consequences #Collabwriters
Just announce on Twitter that you are writing and wait for the congratulations! #Collabathon
Park Collabathon summer 2020
We will arrange a get together in a London park this summer where we can work on our individual or collective WIPs en masse. It is incredibly powerful to be outside in nature and creating. Again it’s FREE, you can bring your own food and drink and there will be power in numbers. Look out for details on our website from June 2020.
In the meantime, rethink your daily routine and find a slot to write EVERY DAY aswell as brushing your teeth and getting that six pack down the gym. There’s more to life than the body, exercise that mind too!