writeonwednesday…practice practice practice

August 27, 2008 § 5 Comments

The old joke comes to mind:
“How do you get to Carnegie Hall?”
Whoops, wrong art form.
That one is for musicians.

I guess the Carnegie Hall equivalent for writers would be…the New York Times bestseller list? Or, a table display of one’s book at Barnes and Noble?

Doesn’t matter what the primo writing goal is – Becca is right, as is Natalie. It takes practice. Writing practice. Sigh. And so this week’s prompt from Becca, who offers up our weekly “challenges” that keep us all writing and talking and talking about writing (which is keenly important, too.) She writes:

How about you? Do you have a writing practice?  What’s it like?  How has it helped you become a better writer?  If you’re thinking about starting a writing practice, how do you envision it?  What would work for you?

And so this prompt turns into My 

True Confession: I don’t have a writing practice time. I come to writing rather like a dog wakes up. One minute, he’s sleeping and the next, when you call his name or rattle his leash, he’s on his feet, ready to go. From zero to 60 in two seconds.

And this is how I abuse the muse. One minute I’m in the kitchen, finishing the dishes. The next I’m at the desk, circling the PC, typing, circling, typing. I don’t take time to practice. I’ve lost the habit.

A warm up would be awesome.
I have had jobs where I did indeed have time to do a practice in the morning. 
But now, after walking the dogs, I spend about 30 minutes at the PC, reading blogs, writing an entry, commenting. The blogworld is my “paper”, with my coffee. Then I wedge in my must-do writing. Then I race upstairs.  I run around the bedroom pulling together an outfit and hoping to remember some mascara so my eyes don’t look completely invisible all day. I get ready for work like a fireman.
And the rest of the day is claimed otherwise. No writing practice in sight, though I will work on an article that’s due or my interminable essays that I must.finish.and.get.out.there. Those are accomplished at either end of the day, as mentioned, but rarely during.

I can however address what I imagine writing practice would be like…
Up at 6. Coffee. Blog in the semi-dark. 30 minutes only.
One more large coffee. Notebook. Bic stick pen (the old blue one).
Begin writing practice as the sun approaches full blush.
Sip. Write. Sip. Write. Sip. Write. Write. Write.
Have those three pages. (yes, I believe in the magic of the 3 pages.
Then slip into my “required”  writing.
Then prep for the day in a leisurely manner.

So that’s how I’d do it.
Why don’t you? you ask.
Mostly cause I stay up late to have time with HM.
I don’t get up early enough.
Maybe I could begin that.
Might as well throw some workout exercises in there, too.

But just maybe…





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§ 5 Responses to writeonwednesday…practice practice practice

  • Interesting post! It’s fun to read about other people’s writing habits.

  • Becca says:

    This was such fun to read…and my routine is quite often more like yours – especially if I stay up too late the night before! I have come to the sad conclusion that I must have seven hours of sleep or I’m no good to anyone or anything!

  • anno says:

    The practice you dream of sounds lovely, maybe something to aim for once or twice a week?

  • oh says:

    BBN – IT is fun to hear what other writers are up to – there’s both comfort and inspiration in it, isn’t there? And today it occurred to me that I should do practice writing at lunchtime. I NEVER know what to do at lunch (while at work). And obviously I’m not going to get up early enough to read and to write, so…

    Becca- It has taken me so long to appreciate sleep and honestly, it “seems” that my best sleep comes in the early morning, when I should be getting up!

    Anno – Yup, that morning thing would be great, and you’re right – I bet I could do it on weekends! I seem to jump out of bed so easily on weekends! And then during the week, maybe write at lunchtime. I have never tried that; I have only tried to get out of the office. This is a whole new world of possibility – thanks, all!

  • jeanie says:

    I love this entry! It was fun; it was funny, it was so like me! (Though probably more fun and more funny!) I’m with you — up too late to do all those necessary things, get ready for work and add in a practice time. (Or for that matter, sweating to the oldies…) But in a perfect world…

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