As a travel writer, you have many goals. You want to use your writing skills to promote the best of any particular area. You want to visit old and new places and get the inside scoop. You’d like to get travel perks. You want to get paid for articles. All of these require that you actually make the time to write.
To be most productive, it’s important that you determine when and where you will write, when your project(s) will be completed, and what you’ll do this year. And next. The more planning you do, the more you can accomplish.
To maximize your productivity, you should design a writing schedule. Use a physical calendar, not your cellphone, at least at first. Schedule possible blocks of time to write. Start with small chunks of time, 15 to 60 minutes. Then layer in other obligations. Get close to what you want. And what you can reasonably accomplish. Don’t worry about being perfect. Try it for a week and adjust. Don’t be surprised if it takes several refinements to work.
Schedule time to write first, then put all the other to-do items around it. Going the reverse route is a big mistake if you want to make writing a business. Your to-do list will expand to take all the available time.
If you have other obligations that absolutely must take priority, then set aside unclaimed time for writing. Look for little gaps in your day. Or wake up 15 minutes early to write. Give up internet browsing in favor of writing. Write during your lunch hour. We know it requires creativity and flexibility to get writing in. If you want to do it, then do it, and work the rest of your tasks around it.
Consider how well you can organize your writing time moving forward. If you write in the morning, you can market and edit in the evening. Don’t get frustrated when your new writing schedule and current schedule don’t work immediately. Move to the life you want in small increments. Think of small ways to make changes. Then make them.
It makes sense to batch similar things together. This allows your brain to focus. First thing in the morning, try intuitive writing or “new pages.” For me, this is the first draft of my article. It may also be the best time to consider story concepts. You may notice with this early writing that you have less of an “inner critic.” It’s a good time to play around and brainstorm. Find time later on for development and research.
If you haven’t quite reached the success you hoped to attain this past year, you’ll need to ask yourself a few questions:
How much writing are you actually doing now?
How much writing do you want to be doing?
What’s preventing you from doing the amount of writing you want to do?
What are you doing instead of writing? What stops you from writing when you do have the time?
What’s your ideal time of day to write? It may help to recognize when you are the happiest. That may be your best time. Or, if you’re a procrastinator, it may be best to do it first thing in the morning so you’re certain it gets done.
If you’re goal oriented, count everything. All your writing and revising time. How many pages you write. How much time you spend blogging. Track the number of minutes you spend on your main project and on your other writing. If you meet your writing goals, you have an idea how much time it takes to accomplish them. If you don’t meet your goals, you know where you need to spend more time.
Remember you’re continuously evolving. Change your schedule as your life changes. Just don’t give up the dedicated time to write. Spend less time listening to that little voice in your head and more time talking to it. Encouraging positivity over time improves your self-talk. And that will make you want to write more at the right time for you.
[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can fund your travels and make an extra income with photography, travel writing, blogging, and more in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel. Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Three Fun Ways To Get Paid To Travel: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]