In last week’s post, I talked about the at-home writing retreat I’m planning. That retreat will be next week, and I’m excited and nervous about it.
I’m excited because I’ll have five days just for writing and reading. That’s a luxury most writers don’t have. Since this is a rare gift of time for my ideas, I want to use it wisely. I think I can get a lot of writing done if I stay focused.
That “stay focused” part is where the nervousness comes from. I know it will be incredibly easy to mismanage my time. If I allow myself to get distracted, I won’t make my daily word-count goal.
And 21st-century life offers an abundance of distractions.
To cut down on Internet distractions, I’m planning to use a software called Freedom to lock my computer down during my writing periods. It won’t allow me to access social media or email if I set it up correctly. And I’m hoping that will be enough to keep me focused.
It could be possible to burn out or get too sore if I sit at my desk for too long. My plan is for each writing session to be no more than three hours long. That should be enough time to get into the flow of writing and make some progress.
I’m also scheduling breaks between each session to read and relax. Perhaps nap if I feel the need. And I have time in my schedule for a walk around the block to work out any soreness.
Because I love to read and reading is my second priority next week, I have a nice stack of books that interest me. The danger is that I get too engrossed in my reading and don’t write enough. To combat that, I’ll use reading sessions as a reward for hitting my writing goals.
I also know that I’ll get hungry and unfocused throughout the day. This weekend, I’ll stock up on healthy snacks and meals. I think having dried fruit and nuts handy should give me an energy and brain boost if my concentration falters. And quick, healthy meals at regular intervals should give my days some structure.
I’ll also have those sweet kitties pictured in today’s photo to keep me entertained. I know they’ll prefer it if I just sit in the living room and cuddle them. I’ll need to resist the urge to comply, and I’m planning quiet reading time in the evenings when I can give them attention.
The one thing I can’t plan for is the unexpected. For that, I’ll just keep my fingers crossed that the week goes smoothly and according to plan.
I’ll likely check in late next Friday with a blog post. Writing a recap of what worked, what didn’t, and what I accomplished could help if I ever get a chance at another writing retreat.