Postponing your writing goals because of the holidays? You don’t have to!
Trust me, I get it. During the holidays, my life is crazy busy. There are all sorts of end-of-the-year obligations, seasonal activities, and family get togethers. There isn’t much time for weaving together plots and characters between all of that craziness. The last thing I want to do is miss out on family time and holiday memories because I’m stuck at my keyboard desperately trying to reach my writing goals.
Are the holidays throwing your writing off? There is nothing like heaps of food, cranky relatives, and shopping madness to hinder your word count goals. Even though this may be a busy time, if writing is your passion, you wont want it to deteriorate just because of a celebration (no matter how wonderful and magical that celebration is).
The good news is, Holidays are inevitable, but your writing doesn’t have to suffer.
Not only can you write during the holidays, but you can do it without missing out on any of the holiday joy! That truly is the key element, because what’s the point in writing if you’re miserable the whole time?
At this point, you may be wondering why you should write during the holidays, I mean, would it really be that bad to just skip a few days (or weeks)? Well, yeah, it might be. More so, writing during the holidays will benefit you, even if not doing so may not ruin your writing career.
Writing during the holidays has many benefits. I have listed several below.
Why You Should Write During the Holidays:
- If you take a break, you may have a difficult time starting again after the holidays.
You may be asking yourself, “Why can’t I just skip writing during the holidays?” You can, but I don’t recommend it. In my post ‘How to Create a Writing Routine’ I discuss not only the importance of a consistent writing routine, but also the dangers of getting off that routine. To get better at writing, you have to write and write a lot. That isn’t going to happen if you throw off your writing routine by taking extended breaks. A routine at rest tends to stay at rest, so don’t get caught in the trap of skipping writing for the holidays.
- The holidays can be stressful, and writing is a great stress reliever.
Writing during the holidays will improve your mood and help you maintain your sanity. Between Aunt Mildred griping about the pie not being low-fat, the store not carrying the one gift that you needed to purchase, and the extra helpings of turkey filling out your jeans, the holidays can be riddled with stress. Use writing to relieve that stress and grab a little ‘you’ time. If you spend a half an hour a day writing, you will feel more relaxed and happy for the rest of the day. Every true writer will attest that they just don’t have as good a day when they skip writing. Do yourself a favor and keep up your writing routine.
- The holidays can make great inspiration for writing.
Some of the greatest works of literature have been birthed by the spirit of the holidays (think A Christmas Carol). The holidays, particularly Christmas, have a wonderful way of kindling emotions. Whether those are good emotions like love and joy or bad ones like frustration (from relatives) or sadness (from thighs growing ever wider with every slice of seasonal dessert), these emotions can fuel writing and provide a beautiful realness to your story. Don’t waste your emotional moments! Use them to propel yourself to writing greatness.
Convinced that you need to keep writing?
Whether you’re writing through the holidays to accomplish your goals, relieve your stress, or gain inspiration, you’re going to need some help. It isn’t easy writing during special occasions and holidays, but here are my five tips to keep writing, crush your goals, stay sane, and finish the holidays strong without sacrificing any of your holiday spirit:
5 Tips to Keep Writing During the Holidays:
- Don’t Skip Out On Holiday/Family Activities.
If you skip all the wonderful activities that make holidays special, you’ll resent writing and regret your decision. Life is short. Too short to skip a snowball fight, decorating the Christmas tree, making a Valentine’s card, or hunting for Easter eggs. Even though you shouldn’t skip these activities, there are other time consuming chores you can postpone for the love of writing. Skip a T.V. show if you need to, but keep those words coming!
- Find a Writing Routine That Works for You.
The truth is, if you weren’t in a writing routine before the holidays, it’s unlikely you’ll magically be on one when the holidays start. The good news for you, though, is it’s never too late to get in a writing routine! Even better news? I have an article the explains the best way to create a writing routine that is uniquely designed for your lifestyle. Check it out here! Once you have a good writing routine, you will write more and your writing will improve.
- Use Tools That Make Writing Fun.
Make sure your tools are working for you rather than against you. Get a writing program that’s easy and convenient for you, and check out my favorite writing app ‘Write-O-Meter’. Write-O-Meter allows you to set writing goals and achieve them with a fun reward system. This app revolutionized my writing life. Check it our here!
- Lower Your Goals Temporarily.
The important thing is that you write, not how much you write. Less writing is better than no writing. It’s okay to lower your word count goals during a busy season, just don’t let them stay there. Slow down to make room for cookie decorating, pumpkin carving, and chatting by slicing your word goal rather than kicking it to the curb. You’ll feel great after you’ve written, but you also won’t be swamped by your goals.
- Write a Holiday Themed Story or Poem.
What better way to enjoy the holiday spirit and write at the same time? Whether it’s a short story about the meaning of Christmas or a poem dedicated to your Christmas tree, writing a holiday themed piece will get you in the holiday mood and keep you writing.
- Take a Break If You Need To.
If you need a couple days just to soak in your family and the joys of the holidays without worrying about writing, go ahead and take a break. A SHORT break. A week off for Christmas is good, maybe more if you are traveling. The important thing to remember is that breaks are temporary. After the holidays, you need to get back in a writing routine so you can accomplish your goals and achieve the success you dream of.
I hope these tips have helped you to accomplish your writing goals this season.
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In the comments, share your tips and and tricks to keep writing during the holidays!
Best of luck with writing, and I wish you the most joyfilled of holidays!