What are some writing-related tasks you do when you’re taking a break from writing? I actually have a list of tasks to do when I’m not laying down word count. They’re things associated with the work-in-progress that at the very least keep me in the right mindset. Sometimes they spark inspiration. In either case, they allow me to slide back into writing rather easily.
Writing-Related Tasks As A Break From Writing
- Review the outline: It helps to remember what I’m writing toward. This prevents concept drift, and ensures continuity. Seeing where I am in relation to the whole story lets me see progress.
- Revise the outline: When I do have flashes of brilliance that are better than the ideas I’d outlined, I make notes on what I need to go back and change, and how it impacts what’s coming up.
- Edit: Rereading earlier chapters allows me to maintain a consistent voice. Sometimes it reminds me of details I’d forgotten, so I can continue to use them.
- Read: There are authors that I read for voice, books that I read to get a feel for the genre or mood I’m shooting for, and non-fiction that I just read for inspiration.
- Research: I tend to keep notes on things I need to fact check or learn more about. That way I can keep writing and look them up later. When I have the information, I can go back and revise.
- Touch other projects: All of the items above, but for future or parallel projects rather than the central work-in-progress.
The Merry Writer is a writer’s game on Twitter run by Ari Meghlen (@arimeghlen) and Rachel Poli (@RPoli3). Each day there’s a new question, and each month there’s a new theme. In these posts I expand upon the answers that I’ve posted on my Twitter.