“Being organised is being in control.”
Why is it that the more you write about something or talk about it, the more determined you are to make it happen? This is the whole reason why I’m writing this very post. As organised as I like to think I am, I’ve realised that when it comes to sitting down to write something, I am not organised whatsoever. I am determined to change this!
So, for starters, I’ve not got a designated “writing space”, something I’ve been meaning to sort out since I started getting back into writing again. I will, quite literally, write anywhere. I’ll sit on my bed propped up with an array of cushions and pillows, balancing my laptop on my knee. Or, like now, I’ll sit on hard laminate flooring, purely because it’s next to my open door. (I am melting, after all). It’s not ideal, but my desk is not at all in the right frame of mind to be used as a writing desk. (Sorry for neglecting you for so long, buddy).
It’s time for change – here’s how to organise your writing space, Em! (i.e, do it now).
USE. A. DESK.
When I used to work from home last year, I had it all worked out. A study room with nice desk, a wonderful view outside and lots of natural light. These days, it’s filled with clutter and sorrow, and probably a little dust too. Having a place to sit and write not only gives you a much better posture, (I’m pretty sure I currently resemble the Hunchback of Notre Dame) but it’s the foundation of writing organisation. You’ll be more comfortable in your own little space and you’ll also become more focused on your work.
Notebooks, paper, pens…and more notebooks!
Oh my God, just stationery in general! Even though you’ll more than likely spend the majority of your time typing away on a laptop or computer, there will come a time where you need to write notes. I plan out my novels on paper most of the time, and I find it so much easier to scribble down an idea than to type it. It won’t hurt to go all out on that stationery either! Come on, you never know when you might need a 30cm ruler or 250 paperclips, right? …Right?
List of tasks/a to-do list.
As well as a diary of what you plan to do and when, it makes sense to bring all your thoughts together in the form of a task list. Whether you know you need to get that prologue finished by the end of the month or if you’ve got a few more chapters to plan out before you can get started on the next section of your novel, having a visual representation of it all up on the wall or in a notebook can make everything seem that little bit clearer.
I’ve been hearing more and more about these bullet journals lately, (wow, how old do I sound?!) and it might be something I consider for my writing. I just watched this video about setting up a bullet journal, which actually turns out to be very simple. I think having something such as this will be very encouraging to many writers and bloggers. Has anyone tried this before or are you doing it at the moment? Please let me know if it’s helping you and if you’d recommend it!
Buy a plant.
It may seem a bit silly, but it’s always nice to have something alive in your work space. At work, I have cactus. Not sure why. Apparently, having a live plant around while you work is supposed to help relieve stress and increase productivity…somehow. I suppose when you don’t have an office dog, you’ll go to extreme lengths to try and look after something….one day!
Have a set routine.
Knowing what you have to get done before you sit at that desk can help you to be more productive. Plan in advance the days where you can write and stick to these times. I plan Monday evenings for writing my blog posts and I originally chose Wednesday evenings for working on my story. However, I’ve come to realise that blogging takes up an awful lot of time. Not just from writing, but also from connecting with others and promoting yourself. It’s not an easy ride! I’ll be the first to admit that I need a set routine to help me in my ways, and I’m pretty sure it’s the answer to my prayers! It got to the point where I was spending less and less time writing my story and spending all my time writing for my blog. With fresh new ideas in the pipeline, I’m more determined than ever.
Decorate your surroundings and invite in the light!
As previously mentioned, having a bright space to work in will always help to give you a clear mind. Try and use a space next to a window, where you can give your eyes regular breaks away from the screen. Make it homely too; pin up some pictures or some writing milestones that you’re proud of that will help spur you on. Maybe even some work from people who inspire you. A bit of colour and a bit of happiness around you while you write can work wonders and make you feel capable of anything.
My next task; organise my writing space! I’ll keep you updated with how things are going and how a completely different set up is helping my writing. I say that because I am very confident it will make all the difference. There’s nothing I like more than breaking off from reality for a little while and getting immersed in the world of writing, fiction and endless possibilities. If I can do it often enough, I’m positive I can hit my writing goals for this year. Watch this space!
How do you ensure you stay organised with your writing tasks? 🙂 (and more importantly, do you have a cactus?)