Still trying to catch up… Today’s topic (which landed in my email yesterday, as today is actually Day 7 :/) is about finding our writing ‘sweet spot’. There are 3 elements to this sweet spot:
- the right place to write
- the right time to write
- the right amount to write
My ‘right place’ is right here on the sofa in the living room with my feet elevated (they do swell so when they’re down), my trusty laptop on the sofa arm if I’m typing, like now; or with my notebook on my lap if I’m scribbling in my daily journal (see staged desk photo above from a few months ago). The living room is filled with light in the mornings and the view is out on to the back garden where I can see the bird-feeders and the bird bath. There’s always something gong on out there whenever I glance up to ponder a moment. And at this time of year, there’s usually a squirrel or three desperately trying to remember where they’ve buried walnuts from the neighbouring farm’s walnut trees 🙂
My ‘right time’ is first thing in the morning. I’ve always been an early riser, and this is THE best time of day – before anyone else is up, it’s just me, my writing and the birds… The only sounds are the ticking clocks, the occasional crow or pigeon call, and this morning, the boiler turning on for an hour or so to banish the morning chill.
The ‘right amount’ is better measured in time than a word-count for me, mainly because numbers are still a challenge since the stroke 12 years ago. When I took the Nanowrimo challenge a couple of years ago (when I scribbled over 44,000 words in 30 days), the worst part was trying to work out how many words I’d written each day. I wrote by hand, so I had count how many words per line, how many lines per page… It fair flummoxed me every single day 😦 The reason I wrote long-hand is I can write with pen and paper quicker and easier than typing – it’s always been the case, even when I had too hands to type with and even now when I’m having to write left-handed.
Doing this challenge here on the blog, I’m certainly finding I can type for 15-20 minutes without too much difficulty, but beyond that, my arm and hand start to ache. Writing by hand, I just keep writing until I’ve said what I want to say. I’ve never noticed how long I’m writing time-wise, but some days it’s half a page and others it’s several pages…
While I’m doing this 14-day challenge, I’m continuing with my daily writing which I started on 30th March, responding to prompts from this ebook. Some questions are more inspiring than others, and I write accordingly. My aim is to keep going for the whole 365 days, and if our kids one day decide they’re curious about their mother’s favourite bus journey or what she considers her greatest achievement, they’ll flick through the journal pictured above.