First Day Back

Yesterday was my first day back. To running, that is. I’ve had some swelling and pain in my ankle that I just couldn’t shake for several weeks as I hobbled around the house.

Finally, I had a few pain-free days where I could get around reasonably well. I wore an old pair of running shoes with some great support and the pain disappeared. I guess the shoes I was wearing around the house were giving my much of the lingering trouble.

So yesterday I went for a run after about a month off and actually got in a sold two miles at a pretty good pace. I’ll take it easy and see how my ankle responds all week but I expect to get back to my normal mileage next week which is a nice change.

The weather was great for a run today – very mild for Alabama. I didn’t arrive home feeling like I’d gone for a swim instead of a run.

Today, young cat, Minou, is off to the vet for THE surgery. He was a foundling stray as many remember with part of his ear missing. We don’t need more stray cats in the area than we already do (no thanks to people dumping pets) so he gets the trip. He’ll be back and no worse for the wear in a few days. Then he gets put to work hunting all the chipmunks and field mice in the area.

I’m working hard on all my writing projects as mentioned over the last few weeks. I’ll share more about print on Thursday but I’m making progress on my new, top-secret novels as well as beginning work on some short stories that will make the rounds to some pro and semi-pro markets.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot. The White Arrow is selling well and just got a nice 5-star review over on Amazon and has started getting several ratings over on Goodreads. That’s quite a nice start. Thanks again to all the readers!

That’s all for today. There’s just too much going on with writing to linger here much longer. Thanks for stopping by today, please leave you thoughts in the comments section below and I’ll get back to you.

5 Ways You Can Harness Your Limited Writing Time

LeftHandIn a post last week, I wrote how I wanted to take better advantage of time by breaking one habit – believing limited time meant I had no time to write. But what ways can a writer re-gain control of their daily opportunities to write? Here are a few strategies I’m trying. Again, the idea isn’t to frantically write in every spare moment but to find ways to be a bit more productive instead.

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  1. I’ve stopped believing I don’t have time. This habit formed over time when I was tired, rushed or distracted. It was a slippery slope of one day that coalesced into many. I now look for spare moments and decide whether I actually have time to write – really write, not just post on social media where I end up wasting more time.
  2. Make notes – I’m using features in Scrivener to make notes about my thoughts when I stop writing. This way I have a reference on which to re-gain my creative mindset when I have those small bits of time to write. Too often, I don’t use the time because I don’t know where to start – or how. Shifting gears between tasks in a busy day means creativity gets buried. Having a reference point gets me started.

Doodling3. Try a short, creative exercise – getting back to creativity means shutting down your practical mental state. You can do this rather quickly by writing a few brainstorming words about your topic or story. Doodling in curves, especially in color, can help too. But again, being time conscious means that you don’t take too long at this. I suspect that the more you practice changing mental gears the better you become. Likewise, I think that stopping these exercises means you lose the ability to be mentally nimble.

  1. Building on the notes – try journaling earlier in the day where you focus your effort on your story and other projects. As you journal imagine aspects of what you can write during the day and note these. Are there fictional conversations that you can distill from your thoughts as well as other details. If you have other projects, what ideas do you want to address. This brings all those vague notions from your mind so that you have something definite about which you can write when ready. The main idea is to journal with the purpose of bringing ideas to the forefront and then having them ready to use at a moment’s notice.

SunDial5. Don’t waste valuable minutes when time is short and you can’t get busy on a particular project. If you have other projects to work on like writing a blog post be ready to shift to that and accomplish something. Just making progress writing is positive enough to keep you going later. Also, I’ve found that being creative one way actually stimulates my writing in other ways. If you want to use small blocks of time then use them any way you can just have a fall-back plan if your stuck.

What strategies do you have for writing in limited time? Do you find that you often think you don’t have time to write but spend the time on something unproductive? Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section.

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IMG_4154-EditAbout the Author

P. H. Solomon lives in the greater Birmingham, AL area where he strongly dislikes yard work and sanding the deck rail. However, he performs these duties to maintain a nice home for his loved ones as well as the family’s German Shepherds. In his spare time, P. H. rides herd as a Computer Whisperer on large computers called servers (harmonica not required). Additionally, he enjoys reading, running, most sports and fantasy football. Having a degree in Anthropology, he also has a wide array of more “serious” interests in addition to working regularly to hone his writing. The Bow of Destiny is his first novel-length title with more soon to come.

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