A couple of weeks ago at the Tucson Festival of Books, I gave my old standby "Finish That Book" workshop - with a twist: I taught with a friend so new I had only just met her that day. Laura Fitzgerald, author of VEIL OF ROSES and DREAMING IN ENGLISH, has an ambitious new multi-volume project underway, and she shared lots of fresh thoughts and ideas about productivity and best writerly practices.
Near the end of our talk, someone in the audience asked for our "best tips and tricks." And naturally I thought of my 45/15s (super simple: set a timer, do nothing but write for 45 minutes, then take 15 minutes off to do whatever you like - and repeat). I talk about 45/15's so often I fear that you all are probably desperately bored with me, but they really are the secret to just about all of my books. I do at least four per day while first-drafting.
Still, I probably wouldn't have written about 45/15s here, if it wasn't for an email I received - by coincidence - right after the Tucson workshop. Kim had been in the audience two years ago when Julie and I gave the productivity workshop at RWA National. She'd been listening to conference CD's in the car, came home, and gave it a shot:
"I applied your little trick of 45/15.
My word count jumped from 300-500 in a day to 1750!"
Of course there's more to this whole gig than just putting words on a page...you have to revise them and embellish them and cut them and sew them into pretty shapes and blah blah blah. BUT you can't do *any* of those things until you've got words.
Give it a shot! I'd love to know how it works for you.