The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug. **Mark Twain

Monday, March 7, 2011

Distractions can destroy an Author's productivity

"I'm gonna write a book....."

"I've got a great idea for an article...."

"I know I could be a great writer if...."

I've often felt sorry for people who have wonderful ideas but can't seem to produce the work.  In fact....just between you and me....there have been times when I've wondered if I should go over and stand in their line.  It seems when I feel the most inspired to "produce" that's when I'm also the most distracted.  Someone calls, another person begs for help, an emergency e-mail pops up or my wonderful handsome husband announces he wants to take me to lunch. 

None of those are bad....but when added together they can rob an author of the time needed to produce.  Successful authors must have quality "butt in chair" time in order to produce good work. 

There are a lot of great books that deal with time management.  There are books just on time management and books that get specific with special plans for authors.  My favorite is the book by Jim Denny, Quit your day job!   It's a wonderful book that covers all the bases.  In Chapter two he helps the reader determine if he's serious about being an author.  He asks the question, "Do you write at least an hour a day, every day?"  How can you call yourself a writer if you are not writing at least an hour a day in your spare time?  He then goes on to say, If you can't find time to write, make time.  Get up an hour earlier or go to bed an hour later.  If you're not writing an hour a day, you haven't developed the discipline and focus to write full time.

Sounds pretty harsh and yet he's absolutely right.  Many people often have desires and dreams, but in reality they don't have the drive or passion to make those dreams come true. 

Now before you get upset and start praying for me to wake up tomorrow with a thousand wrinkles - having unfulfilled desires isn't a bad thing.  Sometimes those dreams can carry us through tough times or help us face an unfulfilled life with the hope that maybe will all fall into place.  No one is knocking the fact that you do have dreams.

But...if you are ready to make those dreams a reality, then the reality is that you will have to design a schedule, stick to it and produce the work.  There's just no way around that fact. 

When I was younger I dreamed of playing the piano.  I loved piano players.  What fun to plop down and instantly create all sorts of tunes that would take listeners on a journey through their emotions.  Unfortunately for me, I didn't have the talent or the drive to make my hands learn the necessary steps.  As a teen I remember talking to a young classical pianist.  She could play Bach and Beethoven and transition to jazz and pop.  I leaned on the upright piano in the choir hall and dreamed out loud.  "I would give anything if I could play like you."  She smiled back and said..."I did."

If you want to be a writer and to serve God with your talents, you can find a way.  It's not impossible.  It won't cost much....just everything you have."

All this week we will go through the process of finding time to write.  Join me as I plan my schedule and get down to business.

God loves you and has called you to write,


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