As a writer, I’ll bet you’ve got more than one ‘brilliant idea’ project rolling around in your head.
If you’re anything like me, you’ve come up with at least a handful of great book ideas in the past 6 months, and have a few other creative ideas flourishing as well.
An e-course perhaps?
An audio series?
A membership section to your blog or site?
Quite likely, all of the above!
It’s one thing to come up with an endless stream of great ideas, but it’s quite another to fine-tune them into a realistic action plan and then to actually execute that plan.
Which means that finding a way of to cut down the time it takes to execute your action plan would be brilliant, wouldn’t you say?
There is a way for you to write your new e-book project in just 25 minutes a day.
The Pomodoro Technique
The technique was developed in the 1990s by an Italian efficiency enthusiast.
Set the timer for 25 minutes – and write.
Churn through your task, ignore distractions. Don’t edit, or check your Facebook account, or make tea, or stare at the ceiling. Just write.
At the end of 25 minutes, stop. Even if you want to keep going on. Just stop.
How It Works
Seeing time ticking down gives the brain a sense of urgency. Our brains like boundaries because boundaries create sharper focus.
Think about it. If I were to ask you to name your favorite book or author, you’d be blank for a few moments. Then you’d come up with one. As ti
me went by, you’d come up with more and more names. Why does this happen?
Because there are no boundaries. You can choose any book or author you want, but your brain is groping for an answer.
First, your brain tries to formulate boundaries. Only then can you focus on a specific book or author.
But what if I asked you who your favorite mystery author is? Your answer would come much quicker, because a boundary has already been defined.
The Pomodoro technique creates a boundary of time, sharpened by the visual of time ticking down. On focusboosterapp, the color of the timer changes from green to orange and then darkens to red, and there’s a ringing sound at the end of the session. On ticktocktimer, a very satisfying gong sound signals the close of 25 minutes.
And that is the secret.
How I Drafted My Book in 3 Weeks
I’ve written a book on sleep. Insomnia and other sleep disorders, to be specific.
It has 6 chapters, an introduction, a summary, a couple of handy worksheets, and many ‘real-life’ stories of insomnia woven in – everything from the hilarious no-sleep story to stuff that will make you cry.
Sure sounds like a big project, doesn’t it? And I’ve written all that by working just 25 minutes a day, using the Pomodoro technique.
I learned about the technique from a fellow blogger, and decided to give it a go.
Can’t hurt, I thought. And certainly anything that has a finite end to it is more appealing than the never-ending feeling of urgency and being overwhelmed that we writers are so good at.
My sleep book had been gathering metaphorical dust for about 5 weeks until I started using the Pomodoro technique.
In just 3 weeks of using the technique, I’ve finished drafting my introduction, key chapters, and summary, and have done roughly 80% of the necessary research and fact gathering. All in 25-minute blocks.
What surprised me was how often I got into the flow of writing – no toggling, no editing, no lack of clarity. Writing seemed delightfully easy!
Make It Work for You
The key to using this technique effectively is using an actual timer. I like ticktocktimer because it lets you choose the length of time you’d like (you might find you work better in 20- or 30-minute blocks).
The best part is that even if you don’t feel like writing, even if you’ve no idea what you’re going to say, it’s easy to begin when you know that the ‘pain’ of writing will be over in a few minutes.
And who knows? You may find yourself in that elusive flow state before you know it!
There it is – the key to writing your next book or project in just 25 minutes a day. Let me know in the comments how it goes for you. Gong!
About the author:
Image: Woman holding clock courtesy of Bigstockphoto.com
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