Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Secret 3

3. Make a regular writing time and stick to it.

I am pretty sure I read somewhere that Flannery O’Connor woke up at dawn every day, fed her peahens and then wrote for six hours. Or it could have been someone like Flannery O’Connor and it might have been for five hours or three hours a day on weekdays before eating a large, farmhouse breakfast. The point is that I could easily look it all up on the Internet because research time definitely counts as part of writing time and if I were having my writing time while sitting at the computer right now you would not be reading this. That is because I would almost certainly be researching Flannery O’connor and anything related to her in anyway possible until I should have gone to bed three hours ago, at which point I would have logged so many writing hours that I’d have to take a week or so off, by which time I would have abandoned this project because I could no longer remember what I was going to say. Which just goes to show how you should keep regular hours and stick to them tenaciously like, maybe, Flannery O’connor, who, off the top of my head and going on memories of very old research, had a disease called Lupus, raised Peahens, didn’t think well of John Steinbeck, lived in the South, and was a super good writer if you don’t mind not knowing sometimes if things are supposed to be funny or not.

One final caution here: Counting research as writing time is a lot like counting tax deductions. You can only count what you use. This is why I am trying to develop a writing style that attempts to include, by name and specifically, everything I have seen, watched or read, ever.

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