2 Essential Writing Habits For Every Writer (Hobbyist And Pro)

If you’re a writer, chances are you’re thinking about developing good writing habits.

My work colleague Alex is a writer too. We usually complain about the fact that we “don’t have time” to write.

Now, since we’re saving commuting time and working from home, we’re encouraging each other to write. With any luck, by the time things return to normal we’ll have created solid writing habits which will stay with us.

But how do you develop a habit?

Writing habits: repeat an activity until it’s a habit

This article, 7 Steps To Developing A New Habit, offers good advice.

The most important tip:

…never allow an exception to your new habit pattern during the formative stages. Don’t make excuses or rationalizations.

Alex and I decided that we’ll stick with the following two activities for 21 days until they become habits. (In the above article, Brian Tracy suggests that it takes 21 days to establish a habit.)

Habit 1: write for 30 minutes every day

What to write?

Alex writes thrillers. He’s getting back to a book he started during NaNoWriMo last year. I’ve decided on a new book in my Eardleys Regency romance series.

Alex and I both spent 30 minutes writing yesterday. We’re checking in with each other via Slack, to ensure that we stick with our 21-day commitment.

We also chose daily journaling as a habit we want to develop.

Habit 2: journal three times a day

I started off 2020 with a new bullet journal.

This year my journaling has been very dry however. I’ve confined myself to calendars and task lists for work.

It’s time to get back to creating a proper writing journal, focused on writing.

I’m including quotes from writers, like this one from Hilary Mantel’s The Mirror and The Light:

Henry likes to utter his sin and be forgiven. He is sincerely sorry, he will not do it again. And in this case perhaps he will not. The temptation to cut off your wife’s head does not arise every year.

Ms Mantel’s writing is a joy; it offers a surprise on every page.

Are you working on developing good writing habits too?

In the uncertain times, writing and journaling are good ways to relax and release stress.

Please share your thoughts.


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