Sometimes I think I’m not really cut out for modern life. Particularly instant access to the internet. It’s one of the reasons I prefer to write with pen and paper rather than directly onto a screen.
I have tried loads of things to reduce the amount of time I spend online. I have used all the popular apps with limited success. There is only one thing that really works for me:
SETTING A TIMER
Here’s how I do it: Every morning I plan out my day by taking a page in my notebook and splitting it in four. Then at the bottom of each quarter I put a task called no surf and a number of minutes next to it. Today that was 64, 65, 66 and 67. I already have a timer set on my phone for the end of each quarter, which over the course of a work day are two hours each. At the beginning of each quarter I start a timer (for 64, 65, 66 or 67 minutes). The agreement I have made with myself is that until that timer goes off, I won’t use the internet.
It’s a low tech solution but the crazy thing is that it actually works.
The genius thing that we did was, we didn’t give up.
I have been thinking about this quote a lot recently. I think it is worth considering. I’m trying to make it as an author and, to be totally honest, I haven’t had a lot of success. I have been publishing on and off for the last seven years and I’m still nowhere near being able to support my family with it.
Honestly, I have considered giving up. I have even decided to give up, but somehow I keep coming back to it.
It seems that writing is something that I can’t give up. I don’t want to give it up.
There are things I can do differently and I’m working on those. I don’t know if they will have any impact, but I will try them anyway. If they work then good, if they don’t then I will just carry on.
The trick, I think, is not to do it because of some theoretical external reward. I might never be able to make a full time living as an author. It would be great, but it’s not the reason I’m writing these stories. I’m writing them because I enjoy the process and as long as I continue to enjoy it I will keep going.