So, it looks like I missed a post last Friday. Hm. That’s no good. I was traveling, if that helps. But I was also in a car for six hours (not driving), so there’s really no excuse. I simply got so caught up in the adventure that I forgot.
I’m not going to talk much about the vacation itself because that’s not really my thing. (But suffice to say it was awesome, even if it was just a four-day road trip to neighboring states.)
What does seem apropos, however, is a post about getting back on the ball after a few days of being totally off-schedule. Because it happens to the best of us, and there’s no need to beat yourself up over it–you just gotta get back on the horse and ride, baby!
So here are my top 5 tips for getting back on the ball with your writing after some kind of disruption–hopefully it was a nice one, like a vacation.
1. get to bed at a decent time
On vacation, it’s easy to get off your sleep schedule, and depending on a) how long you’re gone and b) the time difference, it may take a few days or more to recalibrate. I’m no expert on jet lag, but if we’re just talking a weekend excursion, then reset your alarms and get back into your normal schedule as soon as possible! If you’re an a.m. writer, then this is sure to keep you from missing too much of your designated writing time.
2. set new goals
Vacations and other such departures from the norm are great ways to clear your head and reset yourself, especially if you’ve been doing the same thing or working on the same project for a long time. After some time away from it all, it might be a good time to sit down and set some new goals for yourself, or at least get a fresh perspective on whatever you’ve been working on. Like I said in my writer’s block post, sometimes you just need a change of scenery.
3. use what you experienced as inspiration
Apparently I can’t stop referencing my how to stare at people (and also birds) post, but dang it, it applies. Vacations are such a great opportunity for people-watching it’s not even funny. You get exposed to so many new experiences, places, and of course people when you travel, even if it’s just to the next town over. So why not use it as fodder for your writing? If you’re not a weirdo and didn’t jot down things as you saw them, then take a few minutes and write down what you remember from your last trip. Who knows what kinds of cool stories might come out of it?
Here I go again with the free-writing. I first talked about it in my writer’s block post and I’d love to talk about it more, but for now I’ll say this: if you’re out of your groove, it can’t hurt to try a free-writing exercise and kick those writing habits back into gear. Since it’s actually kind of hard to do unless you have a prompt, allow me to provide some travel-related ones just for the heck of it:
- your first road trip
- summer vacation
- the beach
All you gotta do is pick one and write non-stop for five minutes. If you go off-topic, great. It’s always fun to see where you end up.
5. renew your resolve
So maybe you didn’t meet your word count goal this week, or you missed a blog post. (*cough*) The last thing you need to do is feel bad about it! I don’t know about you, but the worse I feel about my writing and/or my commitment to it, the more I stagnate and avoid getting back into it. Even people with a daily writing habit miss some days. It doesn’t mean you’re not a good writer, or a writer in general! Remind yourself of what you have accomplished and stay positive about whatever it is you want to accomplish. Just because you missed a day doesn’t make you a failure!
what was your most recent and/or your favorite vacation? and what do you do to get back on the ball after you’ve gotten out of sync? and what DO you do to get rid of jet lag? comment below!