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Archive for April, 2010

How to Write When You Don’t Have Time

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Have you ever felt like you’d love to write, but just don’t have the time?

I certainly have.

For a writer, one of the most frustrating things in the world is having dozens (or hundreds) of ideas, but no time to actually write them.  How can you find the time to get ideas down?

I have dozens of half-started ideas, but feel like I have no time to build on them and turn them into the stories I’d like.  However, recently, I’ve been trying a different technique.  I’m starting to concern myself less with having to find the time to finish an idea, merely find some time to make progress on them.

When creating something new, I can generally write 250 words in about 10 minutes.  Since I always seem to find 10 minutes to use the rest room, eat something, or browse one of the various news sites I follow, I’ve started scheduling 10 minutes each evening to try to make progress on one of three ideas.  I allow myself just a moment to choose which idea to focus on, and take those 10 minutes to try and get as far as I can.

If I keep this up for a year, and I’m able to keep most of what I write, I could potentially have a novel-length work after a year (over 90,000 words).

Now that’s an exciting thought.

How do you find time to write?  What other ideas would you suggest?

The computer crashed — Mikal’s Response

Friday, April 16th, 2010

My computer crashed last week.

What a frustrating experience! I back up every week, but unfortunately, it crashed on the morning of back up day. A week’s worth of work, gone in an instance.

I’m not one to cry, but losing a week’s worth of writing is just about the worst experience in the world. I’ve lost more than that in prior crashes, but I felt worse about this one: I’d been doing everything right!

Luckily, I’m also pretty handy with computers, so I was able to recover most of my data. It took four hours, but I recovered almost all of the work I’d done over the past 7 days.

What a relief!

I’ve started a new policy: a daily backup. I don’t ever want to lose more than a day’s worth of work.

In fact, I just kicked it off, so data is copying in the background. I’m feeling much better about …

As I was finishing that thought, the walls start shaking, and I hear a loud rumble. I start to get up to go to the window, when the window suddenly started moving towards me!

I scrambled back, under a table, vaguely remembering that was the safest place in the case of an earthquake. I had no idea what was going on, but it seemed like a better idea than staying in the middle of the room.

The rumbling slowly stopped, the crunching of the broken wood fading into silence. I slowly crawled out from beneath the table.

As the dust settled, I slowly started to make out the shape of a large dump truck. A small yellow sign faded into view through the dust:

“Watch for vehicle when backing up.”

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