Write Your Book This Year: Before You Jump

Whoosh–slap. Whoosh–slap. Did you learn to jump rope? Remember watching two friends turn a rope, as they called you in? Whoosh–slap. Whoosh–slap. Watching, waiting, feeling the rhythm, gathering courage, fearing the rope. Once you got the hang of it, you could jump all day.

If you are hesitating to write your book, let’s use that hesitation! Feel the rhythm, watch for your opening:

1) Calendar. Create your year, month, week, and today. Where are the openings? Where do your daily check-ins fit? Where can you carve out a few hours regularly? Consistency counts: let your subconscious/muse/divine inspiration/intuition/talent angel/idea fairy know when and where to find you.

2) Circadian rhythm. When do write best? First thing in the morning, while your inner critic sleeps in? Lunchtime, after a brisk walk? Evening, as the perceptions of your day settle? Experiment. Then adjust your calendar.

Tokyo Jump Ropers
Tokyo Jump Ropers

3) Count. Children expect to miss; they are after the longest winning streak, not infinity. Keep track of writing commitments met–maybe treat yourself to gold star on your calendar. If an illness, accident, or spontaneous opportunity takes you out of the game–start a new count. It’s your turn again. Jump.

4) Catch the rhythm. Read! Make that part of your writing schedule. Even during your writing time, it can be helpful to read a few paragraphs of a favorite book, revel in fine prose for a few minutes, then jump. Competitive jump ropers can jump in before the rope slaps the ground.



Text © Gwyn Nichols 2013. All rights reserved. WritersResort.com

Screenshot from YouTube

“Show Me Difficult”

Werner Erhard often talks about things that exist only in language: “Show me Difficult. Whales do not find anything Difficult.” And he also says something like, “I don’t have ‘too much to do.’ I have only ‘what I am doing’ and ‘what I am not doing.'” Here’s one of those places he said it. 

At this moment there are dozens of things which I am not doing. And there is this one thing that I am doing. We always have time for whatever we put first. A challenge like this keeps this blog on my DO list, rather than my NOT DO list. There is no guilty-for-not-doing list. Nor any guilty-to-be-doing list. Simply do and do not, to mess up Yoda’s famous line.

Enjoy what you’re doing. Enjoy what you are not doing.


Text © Gwyn Nichols 2011. All Rights Reserved.

The Things We Put First

“You always have time for the things you put first.”

— Wish I had the source. Do you know?


Sometimes it’s almost midnight, you have seven tasks to finish for the morning, you’ve just referred to a great video about getting enough sleep, and you’ve promised your loyal readers, all three of them, a daily blog post. So you write—because that’s the promise. And you’ve already kept more important commitments today so you can pull off one more. The work doesn’t have to be done well–just done.