How to Write Two Books in 2021 And Still Have Time to Spare

A realistic change in habits can leave writer’s block in the past

How long does it take to write a novel?

Some simple math reveals astonishing results: if you write just twenty minutes a day, six days a week, you will end up with the equivalent of Fahrenheit 451 and the first Harry Potter book in one year. That’s with two weeks off for vacation.

Words written in a year based on time spend writing each day
Words written in a year based on time spend writing each day

Give yourself a launch-pad

A lot of writing time is spent catching up on where you last left off and determining how to continue. To avoid this, end in the middle of a paragraph or even the middle of a sentence. You will instinctively fill in the gaps when you return and save yourself a few minutes of recap.

End in the middle of a paragraph or even the middle of a sentence to give yourself a head-start in your next session.

Another similar trick is to open your word-processor right before you go to bed (or before your next writing session) and open it to your current project. The fewer barriers you have to start, the better.

Shut out distractions

If you write for twenty minutes a day, you can easily produce two novels in a year. However, many spend time “writing” with Facebook open in another tab or with their phone sitting face-up next to them. They’re one tap or click or notification away from a ten minute rabbit trail of Tweets and responses, posts and comments, videos and recommendations. Just like that, their writing time is gone.

Distribution of time spent writing
Distribution of time spent writing

Finding 20 minutes a day

You may need to sit down and re-evaluate how you’re spending your time. Try to think of the unhealthy, neutral, or even healthy things you can cut out of your life to make time for that which is even more important. Social media, naps, video games, social events — they’ve all got their time and place. After writing.

Try to think of the unhealthy, neutral, or even healthy things you can cut out of your life to make time for that which is even more important.

Somewhere in your busy schedule and hectic life, there is twenty minutes you can use to write. The average person spends 2 hours and 24 minutes on social media. Even if you aren’t average, there’s a good chance you can cut out half an hour of Instagram to pursue your dreams of being an author.

Make room for writing by cutting back on other things
Make room for writing by cutting back on other things

Sticking to your writing schedule

A “schedule” in this sense refers to a birds-eye view of how you’re going to write your two books this year. The calculations I mentioned earlier have built-in breaks. Once a week, you can take a day off. Use it to avoid burnout. If you’re in a busy time of your life or just need a vacation, take a week-long break. If you feel guilty taking a break from writing, you’ll avoid returning. Writer’s block will only compound the longer you’re away. These breaks are there so you don’t feel guilty when you need to step away for a time.

If you feel guilty taking a break from writing, you’ll avoid returning. Writer’s block will only compound the longer you’re away.

Use your time off wisely. Do your absolute best to stick to your timetables so you can write two novels this year!

When inspiration fails you

If you’re depending on inspiration to carry you to the finish line, you’re in deep trouble. Inspiration is wonderful but unreliable.

Novelist, software developer, student, avid fantasy reader. More content at https://www.instagram.com/write_or_left/

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store