I want to tell you about the one thing I’ve been taught* in the past three years that has been the single most important learning in my writing life. Actually, I don’t want to tell you, I feel compelled to tell you. Like an evangelist with the gospel or a scientist with the cure, I feel like this one thing can actually save your creative life. Here it is.
Thirty minutes a day.
Whatever it is you are trying to do, there is a lot I don’t know that could really help you. However, if you are trying to write something of lasting value, start spending 30 minutes each day with your butt in a chair putting words on paper.
At first you might simply stare off into space, unsure what to write. This is fine. It is good. It is profitable. Once you have done this for a few minutes, your mind will be quiet and your pace slowed. Now, write the first thing that comes to your mind, then the second, then the third. Do this for thirty minutes for the first day. Come back the next day and do this again. Once you have something on paper that you are legitimately interested in, focus on that the following day.
Make this thirty minutes sacred. Make it the most critical thing you do each day. Soon you will find that it is the foundation. Soon you’ll be telling someone else about it just like I’m doing. Trust the process. If you do this you’ll find that one day you will have more ideas, more potential projects than you could produce in a lifetime. You’ll expand your time to an hour, then an hour and a half.
This is how the work is done.
*Thank you, Dan Barden, for bringing me to the crossroads.