One of the best writing habits I’ve ever developed doesn’t actually involve writing. It involves going off-line and screen free. Unfortunately, I broke this particular habit during one of my book rewrites. I need to redevelop it.
At least one day each weekend, I don’t even turn on my computer. I don’t check my e-mail. I don’t go on Pinterest. If I read, I don’t do it on my husband’s Kindle Fire (very handy for my crochet pattern PDFs). It also means that I don’t get much writing done on this particular day but that’s okay.
What do I do instead? I go out with my family. This might involve visiting my Dad, playing a game with my son or hiking with my husband. We might go to a movie or a family birthday party.
I read books. There is very little more decadent than sprawling out on the sofa on a Missouri winter day, shawl draped over my lap, cup of coffee in one hand and actual print book in the other.
I knit. I crochet. I might thread new elastic through a skirt casing or put a button back on a shirt.
One day I brought up my mother-in-law’s wedding china and arranged it in my curio.
Sometimes I listen to blue grass or classic rock and clean up in my office or do the ironing.
I bake bread or other less healthy, but fantastic, things from scratch.
It may not be death-defying or super-exciting but it is valuable to me as a writer. It turns my attention from the reality of glowing pixels to the much larger really of the world. It gives me time to decompress. I recharge and I stretch. By the time I get home from yoga Monday morning, I am ready to write. Are you? If not, maybe you need to join me in spending some time off-screen.