Daily Archives: August 5, 2011

Nugget #4 on Clockwork Muse- Finding a Rhythm

Nugget #4

I am still in the chapter on scheduling.  I just read a few pages today.

Point 1.  Eviatar claims a steady schedule is essential.  This includes times of the week you always write, as well as times of the day.  So far so good.  He also writes that you need to honor your own needs.  Writing is not like turning on a switch and some amount of warm up is a good idea.  He suggests looking at email, making coffee, or whatever else “sets the mood.”
Point 2.  You need to find your own best time which will involve some experimenting.  This can take “weeks or months” he says.
Point 3.  TO find your schedule it might also be good to start constraints; this means making a weekly schedule and marking through times you can not write and then starting there.

My thoughts.  Again this seems so obvious, I chafe at the thought of applying it.  I realize this is my own arrogance since even knowing it I don’t do it enough.

Having that set of warm up activities can bleed VERY quickly into full out procrastination.

I like the idea of finding one’s “natural” rhythm.  But I am so used to beating myself up that my first thought was I have had years and years of self-experimentation.  Fat lot of good it has done.  On the other hand, to be positive, I started thinking about what I do know.
A) I can be very flexible.  I have several ways to jot down tasks, for example.  Instead of trying to pick the “one best” I just switch back and forth as mood suits.
B) I think short writing exercises- baby steps- do help me get momentum.  These nuggets are part of that.
C) Early afternoon is the devil’s time.  I never feel energized.  That is the best time to get exercise, check email, clean up office.  From 1-3.
D) I often seem to be productive late afternoon, from 3-5 or 6.  This can produce conflict though with parenting and housework.

I think further experimentation is in order.  And as a good empiricist, I’ll need to record observations to have enough data.

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