Maybe for some of you 60 minutes is a lot (!) but if you stop to really notice the time you spend writing a new post + reading blogs + leaving comments, you’ll probably come to the same conclusion as I have: if we don’t pay attention to the little clock on the right-hand side of the screen, we’ve just wasted a quarter of the day doing nothing productive.
So what do you do?
First, you choose a time-limit that you feel is acceptable to spend frying your right brain (the one responsible for your creativity). I’ve reckoned 1 hour should (must!) be enough. So I sit down on my chair, set my little alarm to 60 minutes and here’s what I do during that time in its specific order:
1. I read and reply to comments using Manage Comments (under My Blogs) and Track My Comments (under My Account)
2. I write, revise and publish my new post-a-day entry.
3. I open my subscriptions page (My Account > Read My Subscriptions) and pick one or two posts that seem to suit my preferences, read them only while they are still grabbing my full attention (if I stop to look at the window, it’s probably not worth it) and leave my comment at the end.
4. If I still have time, I let myself jump-click to another blog and this may happen in one of two ways:
a. I’ve read a comment in one of my subscribers’ blogs that seemed original, honest and interesting, so I visit his/her blog or
b. I open the WordPress Fleshly Pressed page and pick one blog entry
(a. and b. only get read completely if and while the post selected is still interesting and I leave a comment if I got to the end of it.)
Because I left number 4 to the end, I won’t feel bad if the alarm goes off and I’m in the middle of reading a post, I just leave the tab open to finish that read in the following day.
Now, I must confess, some days I spend all 60 minutes on number 2, especially when I’m writing a longer and more thoughtful post about one of my favorite topics: Creative Writing or the way we interact with each other — Humanizing.
Other days, I skip number 2. directly to number 3. because I wanted to read a longer post from another writer: for example, one of his/her short stories. When that happens my post for that day states what I’ve been reading and, because I thought it was interesting, I leave a link to the Short Story so that you may read it too. Example: Reggie’s Day.
After those 60 minutes have ended, I stop myself from opening, reading or commenting another blog for the rest of that day. I usually like to get up and move around a little bit, even if just to make a cup of tea, walk down the stairs and see if I’ve got mail or take a breath of fresh air by the window.
In the next slot of writing time one of my novels gets my full attention. I have little tricks to make sure of that too, but, hey, my alarm just went off…