During the month of April, I challenged myself to carry out two major constructive changes in my writing. First, I signed up for the A to Z Blog Challenge , a challenge which requires 26 posts during the month of April (every day but Sunday) on any topic you choose. I chose to write about the development of a character’s emotions and feelings.
The second challenge I took on was to write at least ten minutes each day before looking at emails or social media. My hope was to break a habit. Research has shown that it takes 30 days to break a habit, and that same 30 days can train a new habit. This challenge had its genesis with Sue Mitchell, writing coach at An Untold Story.
The last letter of the alphabet, Z, is written and posted, and the 30th day of April has come and (almost) gone. I survived both challenges and I’m a better writer for it.
Writing blog posts for 26 out of 30 days kept me on my toes and my fingers tapping. Of course, some of my posts were written ahead and scheduled to post, but some days I wrote more than one post, or about 1,000 words. Just think if those cumulative words had been for my memoir. A few more days and I could complete my first draft!
With each letter and post, I could feel my writing skills improving daily. I suppose you could say I felt I was finding my groove! And I met some incredible writers and bloggers widening my writing community. A win/win.
The real high comes from the fact that after 30 days (OK, almost 30 here in the Pacific NW) I no longer sit down at the computer and head first for emails, Facebook, Twitter or anything other than to WRITE FIRST. Priorities have shifted. Oh, yes, they have! I feel more in control now. And if I don’t make it to Facebook or Twitter until later in the day or at all on a single day, I’m comfortable with that.
So, I challenge each of you to think about what I’ve accomplished in 30 days. I know many of you don’t struggle with these issues of managing time for writing, but some of us do. And when you get a handle on it, you just can’t help but brag a bit.
Q4U: What are you doing to make the most of your writing time? I’d love to hear how you manage your time and challenge yourself to stay above the fray of everyday life.
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