Developing Good Writing Habits is Like Flossing Your Teeth

If you are going to write, you've got to write.  Dental_floss_teeth_266168_l

I know, I know.  But I was feeling profound today so I thought I'd lay the full force of my brilliance on you.

All kidding aside, you've got to make time to write if you are ever going to finish that novel.  Or book to promote your business. Or memoir.  Or short story.  Or article.  Or blog post.  The writing doesn't get done on its own, alas.  And the best way for you to get it done is to work on it regularly, because:

  • then you don't have to go back and reread all 50,000 words you've already written
  • your subconscious latches onto your story and works on it for you
  • you develop momentum
  • you actually look forward to writing because its not such a big deal
  • the words flow more easily

This is why I harp on the topic of creating a regular writing schedule so incessantly.

And this morning it occurred to me that doing so is like flossing your teeth.   Which you do regularly, right?  Well, maybe not.  Because I was a teeth-flossing slacker until I realized recently that flossing takes about 5 minutes, probably less.  And if I do it every day my teeth feel good and clean.  And if I don't, they feel dirty and gross.  The other day I was going to opt out of flossing, when I remembered that I wanted my teeth to feel good and clean, not dirty and gross.

So I took the time to floss.

I want my mind to feel good and clean, the way it does after I write, not dirty and gross as it does when I'm avoiding it.  So I write. 

And look: you can write 15 minutes a day and feel good about it.  Truly, doing it is far more important than how long you do it or how great the words are that you're producing.

I bet you even have 15 minutes to devote to it this weekend.  Add on 5 for flossing your teeth and you are good and clean and shiny from head to toe.

What's your writing schedule?  What works best for you?

*Along the lines of creativity in general, I have a video series for you.  I've written before about how I often sometimes like to take time to mess around with painting and art.  Mess being the operative word.  But my friend Linda told me about her husband's new series in which he actually gives helpful instruction about art, which you can access here.  And, as you know, I believe that everything we do impacts our writing, so you might just get some tips that will help you in glumping out the words.  Check it out.

**And along the lines of creativity as it pertains to writing, check out my free ebook on creating a vision board for your book.  Its amazing what vision boards can do for you and your book!

***Who knew you could find photos of dental floss?  The interwebs, they are amazing.  This lovely shot came from inya. 

3 Responses to Developing Good Writing Habits is Like Flossing Your Teeth

  1. Trisha 09/15/2011 at 17:40 #

    Your profundity is shaming me right now – I haven’t been writing (or doing writing-related ‘stuff’) nearly as much as I should.

  2. Charlotte Dixon 09/16/2011 at 20:29 #

    Thanks, Trisha. And we all go through dry spells. Trick is to not let them last too long! Good luck getting back to it!

  3. orthodontics for adults 08/15/2012 at 00:32 #

    I actually learned how to floss everyday. It seems that flossing helps reduce the plaque buildup in our teeth. Plaque buildup can irritate the gums.

Leave a Reply