You’ve learned how I write, and I think some variation of my method could help almost anyone. Still, don’t take any other writer’s word on writing. No one else can prescribe how you write. As I described in an earlier post, a program called Asana greatly helps me keep track of my writing, but that’s just me. You will need to approach your own method scientifically, setting up a certain routine, seeing if it works, and changing one variable at a time to see if your routine improves or not. Also keep note of external circumstances that thwart your routine or, in very rare cases, help it. You have to do all this without letting your experimentation distract you from your actual writing.
You will personalize your own writing process, but there are tricks that work universally on the human mind. If you must end a writing session, then STOP, in the most abrupt sense of the word. Leave ideas spinning. Let sentences hang. Allow thoughts to rage forward with no guidance. Make a note at the top of the document briefly describing where you are in the project. To start next time, you’ll simply have to follow the instructions you’ve left for yourself. This works because the mind hates stopping in the middle of things. This is called the Zeigarnik Effect. Check out this past post to read more about how the Zeigarnik Effect can aid in taming your muse. The deliberate sense of incompleteness you create will fuel your brain’s desire to finish the piece the next time you return to it.
Well? Reading a post means nothing. If you want to create a writing routine, you must take a concrete step, and now, not later. For 95% of people, the first step should not be grandiose. It should, in fact, be quite small. But the key is that this small step must get the ball rolling in such a way that it will not be easily stopped. For example, decide right now that you will write for one minute at 8 pm every evening. This is a stupid goal in and of itself, but as a means to creating a system for you to work with, it is invaluable, and a realistic system with potential to grow is worth so much more than an unattainable goal.
Go on! If you don’t have a system for writing, create a step that will propel you in the right direction. Go on. Do it. RIGHT NOW (WRITE NOW?).
Also, I have one final to thing to ask of you. How do YOU write?