Writers, have you discovered the Pomodoro technique? #amwriting #timemanagement

Are you a full time writer?

I’m not, so like a lot of others, I have to fit my writing time around my full time business. And my business is VERY full time – I train and judge competition dressage horses at National and International level. It’s a fabulous job, but very time consuming, not to mention sometimes exhausting.

This is me in my day job

When people glibly tell me that there is always time to be found in the work day, I know they have NO idea what my life is like. I can often be on the road by 7am, and not home until 10pm, having been either driving or working the entire time. Please tell me where I am supposed to find time to write in that schedule?

I’m not complaining, no sir, I’m just making a point. Not everybody’s life lends itself to a regular writing routine. Mine certainly doesn’t.

So what is my point?

Well, I recently followed a short writing course, largely because it had a great module on plotting (guess who is trying to learn more about plotting vs pantsing?). But what it also had, was a section on time management.

My first thought was, ‘here we go again, I’ve heard it all before’.

But I hadn’t! This course introduced me to the POMODORO TECHNIQUE.

If you haven’t come across it yet, it is a time management approach developed in the late 1980s, and named after the Pomodoro kitchen timer.

 The reason I found this so useful?

Because I have always felt that there was no point starting to write unless I had at least a clear hour available. Anything less than that seemed to me to be unproductive, and I hate to get started only to find I have to give up.

The nub of the Pomodoro technique, though, is that you work for exactly 25 minutes. Not more, and not less.

If you have that magic hour free, then you can fit two sessions in, with a small gap in the middle for coffee making or similar.

I guess, now I think about it, that this is at least partially based on the knowledge that we (humans) can only concentrate fully for 20 minutes at a time, so the 25 minutes stretches that just a touch, followed by the short break, and then back for another 20 (or 25) minutes work.

What it has meant for me, personally, is that my next book is coming along much quicker than previous ones, because I can often find 25 minutes spare, where I might have to wait days to find one of those precious hour gaps.

It has enabled me to give myself permission to write for just 25 minutes, and without guilt that I didn’t get that full hour of work in.

Crazy, huh? But it’s working for me.

I’ve finally realised that my one hour rule is yet another of those dreaded procrastinations we writers are often so prone to.

How about all of you, how do you manage your time?

Even if you are a full time writer, with all the guff that goes with it these days, how do you arrange your productive writing sessions?

Does anyone else have a favoured minimum writing time?

Deborah Jay

Mystery, magic and mayhem

Join me at:

http://deborahjayauthor.com/

https://www.facebook.com/DeborahJay

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7172608.Deborah_Jay

Amazon author page: http://viewAuthor.at/DeborahJay

 

 

 

 

Sorry About Being MIA!

I know I haven’t been able to share as many of my favorite bloggers’ posts as I’d like over the last week or two, but I’m just in a drastic time crunch, here. Between finishing the END of my WIP, while simultaneously working with my editor on the beginning of it, and the plethora of doctor’s appointments and other commitments I have scheduled, I need at least 30 hours in a day to keep up. (I know many of you can identify with this.)

Lemon Shark recently shared a post called “Without Apologies,” wherein she addressed the guilt we heap on ourselves when we can’t keep up with our social media. Following her lead (almost, since I actually AM apologizing, here), I’ve been forced to empty my Inbox of the kajillion post alerts, and start fresh. I will try my best to read and share as much as possible, but please understand, I’m not quite on top of it all right now, as I usually strive to be.

The good news is, I’m almost at the finish line, and will be able to regroup then. I’m looking forward to catching  up with you guys, and resuming my goal of sharing your posts as far and wide as I can. It won’t be long now, honest!!

Thanks so much for not writing me off as a real slacker. 🙂 Now, back to your regularly scheduled programming. Oh, and have a great Freya’s Day.

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Check Out This Very Informative Post!

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Marsha Ingrao has a super post on Making Your Blogging Great. If you’ve ever wondered about Alt tags and things of that nature (I sure have!), Marsha explains it all in language even I can understand, complete with screen captures. I never realized the importance of these, and I’m betting at least a few of you guys never thought about them, either. (Surely I’m not the ONLY one? 😯 ) Go here, and you’ll see what I mean:

Always Write: http://marshajustwrites.com/stupid-questions-you-need-to-ask/

You might follow her blog while there, too. I’m guessing there are plenty of other things to learn about. 🙂

Great Interview with our Friend, Deborah Jay

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D. G. Kaye has a lovely interview with Deborah Jay that you really should check out. Both of these Debs are good friends of authors everywhere, and contribute to The Write Stuff on a regular basis, and now I’m planning a future trip to Scotland, for sure. (Be afraid, Deborah Jay. Be veeeerrrry afraid!) 😀

I’ve already downloaded my copy of The Prince’s Son. Very much looking forward to reading it!

http://dgkayewriter.com/guest-author-friday-book-deborah-jay-princes-son/

 

TK8 Sticky Notes – #Sharing

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My post yesterday on Goals made me realize (once again) that I’d be lost without my Sticky Notes on my desktop. Yeah, I know there’s one included with Windows, but it’s limited. I’ve tried several types, and my favorite by far is TK8 Sticky Notes.  There’s a free version, and a paid one. The free version is limited to five notes at a time, so after using it for a while, I upgraded. I love all the ways you can keep your notes and reminders handy, yet not necessarily covering your desktop at all times. (I like my pretty wallpapers. 😀 )

If you’re looking for an easy way to keep your ideas, memos, grocery lists, and random thoughts organized, give the free version a try, and see what you think. Lots of built-in flexibility, and very handy, indeed.

#Sharing #BookPromotion D. G. Kaye’s “MenoWhat? A Memoir”

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Grab your copy of D. G. Kaye’s MenoWhat? A Memoir today! Why now? Because it’s on sale for $.99! It won’t get any better than this, folks. And you KNOW you want to read this one! Check out her post, and order your copy NOW. (I have an overwhelming desire to add “But wait! There’s MORE!” But I won’t. This is good enough all by itself!)

Go HERE to check  out Deb’s post with full details and commentary and reviews. Or go HERE to order direct from Amazon. And please share the news far and wide! Thanks!

Feelin’ The Love Today!

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This is one of those mornings when you wake up to find lovely things in your Inbox. Nothing makes my cuppa Earl Grey go down better, I have to confess. First, I found my entire  Wake-Robin Ridge series was displayed today on Sally Cronin’s Summer Reading Blog feature. Wow! Such a nice thing to see! Thank you, Sally. To read (and mostly, to share far and wide, pleeze?) you can go HERE.

Then I discovered my latest book, Harbinger, was being featured on Rosie Amber’s blog as a #TuesdayBookBlog post, and with a 5-star review, no less. THANK YOU, Rosie! To see, and hopefully share, what Rosie thinks of Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3, go HERE.

This is the kind of thing that makes the LOOONG hours worthwhile. Just knowing there are some readers who enjoy my stories makes me happy I finally decided to give writing a go. And belonging to our caring and supportive community of writer and bloggers is the icing on the cake.

Color me happy . . . as a clam! 🙂