Step one – Most importantly – get a quiet place for yourself, preferably one with a door that you can shut. I generally find barricading myself inside a bedroom with baskets of laundry helps, but hey, whatever works for you. Make sure all requisite drinks and snacks are within arms reach. (You don’t want any interruptions.)
Step one (a) – go pee. (See interruptions above.)
Step two – shut off all social media. Don’t even check it first (hard, I know, but you can do it.) Ignore those tweets, emails, and messenger notifications, and mentally (if not physically) impose some serious sensory deprivation on yourself. (Ironically, my phone just beeped. I’m leaving it.)
Step three – open up your laptop or pick up that pen and paper and start writing. Sure, the first parts might not be pretty, but don’t think about it – no crossing out, no searching for that perfect word – just get it down. You might go back and add stuff, but don’t take anything away. Yet.
Step four – keep going. Keep going until your eyeballs bleed, your house catches on fire, or whatever. Keep going until you are actually forced to stop (generally the only thing I stop for is immediate threat to life or limb, stuff like property damage I deal with after. So if you ever find me sitting in the remains of a burned out building still typing on my laptop, you’ll know why.)
Step five – take a deep breath, and congratulate yourself. Take a movement to go pee, and resist the urge to edit – that comes later. Just enjoy what you wrote first.
Hit me fast, hit me hard, hit me write where it hurts (pun intended). Check out more on the craft of writing back here. And don’t forget our New Releases and Greatest Hits – crank ‘em up and let ‘em roll.