From Passion to Project in just 15 minutes a day
Apr 13, 2022
We get it. You have a burning passion to get those words out. You want to write that non-fiction book that will change someone’s life or share that novel that will keep readers turning the pages past bedtime. But how do you get a book out when you can’t even control the pile of laundry that seems to multiply like the feeding of the five thousand?
Although it seems like it’s impossible to do it all and write the words in your heart, there are ways to make your burning dream a reality. It’s about taking advantage of the margins and pockets in your day to write down words. You don’t have to block out multiple unbroken hours in a day to write. It doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process that needs the right conditions to succeed. The key is believing in your dream enough to intentionally invest in the process instead of losing time with things like mindless scrolling on the internet. (I know, ouch!)
Here are five helpful tips that you can do in only fifteen minutes that will turn your passion into a project you can be proud of.
- Make the margins matter. First, let’s define what that is. In technical terms, margins are a border or edge; the space around the printed or written matter on a page (dictionary.com). You can visualize this easily when you think about your Bible or favorite book. There may be notes written into the space around the text. You may have lines of text highlighted, underlined or written under. In your daily life, margins are the portions and pockets of space you find along the edges of your to-do list – the bits of breathing room (small as they may be!) around your schedule that are opportunities for you to put some thought toward that inner passion. Yes, they may be your only chance to do other things. But if you want to see significant growth in the area that God has put on your heart but need the discipline to continue, margins are the perfect moments to take advantage of and write in. If you give as many of them to your project right now, it won’t be long until you’ll have them back in your day for the other things.
- Set a word count goal. Think about the type of book you are writing and then the average number of words for those book types. Then throw off the insecurity as you see those numbers, and look at it like a recipe. What main ingredients do you need to create a first draft based on word count? (An overall idea, a way to get the words out and then word count.) It’s helpful to determine how many words you can feasibly write per day. Is it 500? 300, even 100? No matter the amount, if you are consistent in these word count goals for 15 minutes a day, you will end up with a manuscript before you know it. For example, 500 words a day gives you a 50,000 word manuscript in approximately three months!
- Brainstorm at bedtime.This may seem counterproductive to writing, but if you have ten to fifteen minutes of a break and you don’t want to physically type anything, brainstorming is actually a very effective activity. Use that margin (the shower is great for this) to think, pray and stir up thoughts. In those moments you may gain the words needed to fulfill your word count goal or even the triggers to write down that will serve as helpful writing prompts later. Hint: have your phone notes app or notepad and pen close by in the bathroom so you can write down ideas after you get out of the shower.
- Use an icloud (or equivalent) based notes app or word processor for info gathering. If you feel like you always have your phone around, make it work for you as opposed to it working you. Consider that word count goal. It’s not impossible to achieve when you use what’s in your hand. Having a notes app that is available across your devices will allow you to type in words as you get a moment and then pull those words into your main word processor later. Remember the goal for your first draft is not for perfect words, but to get the words out.
- Dictate when your hands are busy.The margin here may not be time but using the moments you have in creative ways. If your hands are busy folding, cooking, or even exercising, you can use a headset to dictate into your notes app or word processor. This may call for a bit more editing later, but you’ll be surprised at the amount of words you can talk out. According to Capitalize My Title, a slower talker can actually release an average of 1,500 words in fifteen minutes. That’s two blog posts or about 2/3 of a book chapter. Just 1,500 words a day can help you produce a 45,000 word draft in one month!
It doesn’t take a lot of time to see considerable growth in this area. Just one, fifteen minute margin per day can produce significant results for your writing. You have important things that need to get done each day, but now it’s time to make sure your dream is part of that.
We hope these tips motivated you to make your margins matter as you work towards your writing goals. At Called Creatives our desire is to help women like you write and speak with influence and impact. Join us for access to additional topics, exclusive training and connection opportunities. Our content is specifically cultivated to help you succeed in whatever form your calling takes.
We hope these tips help you make the best decisions for your career!
At Called Creatives our desire is to help women like you write and speak with influence and impact. Join us for access to additional topics, exclusive training and connection opportunities. Our content is specifically cultivated to help you succeed in whatever form your calling takes.