I tend to be an evening writer. I have always been a night owl and come from a family of night owls. 🦉
My writing speed varies, based on when I am “in the zone” or staggering through searching just for the right word or evocative mood or working with phrasing. In “editor” mode I am much, much slower ergo in “draft” mode I am… well you get the point.
I usually avoid word sprints because they tend to only produce “fluff” writing and I find it difficult to turn the “in the zone” writing on and off merely for the sake of what feels to me like an artificial exercise. I am not saying “word sprints” don’t have value or their place, only that it doesn’t work for me. Driving faster when you don’t see where your going, just doesn’t get me where I want to go or feel led to go if I am to be co-creating with my Lord. I need to be quiet enough to feel His inspiration lead me through the scene and characters and surprise me for where it may reveal to be going. Perhaps, I am old school in that.
You do you. If God gives you a ski rope handle to pull you out of the water, then enjoy that ride.
As for dictating the text, that rarely works for me. I find the best writing comes when I think before I speak. I’m not wired for amazing improv. I think it comes out of my being an introvert, rather than a gregarious, people guy.
I would just say, find the way that works for you. No one can prescribe a single way it must work. God makes individuals, not clones. Find your sweet spot and go with it. Pray for it. God says we often have not because we ask not.
Sometimes the nature of the story or genre you are writing will lead you to a different methodology and approach. When I write comedy, I find that I can find it better in dictating it into a microphone, rather than writing it out, like I would a traditional story.
Try writing a romance using a speech-to-text program and you’ll see the shift in the genre to comedy in mere seconds. (Well, that happens to me, anyway.)
All in all, let your writing be fun and consistent. Sneak snacks of time, with a ready notebook, that you can bring back to your “writing station” later, with that precious “story fodder”. Look for and find elements of the writing process that excite you and you will find yourself drifting into “the zone” more often than not. Mindset plays a powerful role in writing. Philippians 4:8 was written for a reason. It lends a perspective to the dark moments that your character must go through in the course of the story, that keeps you above to enticement to feeling the emotional nihilism that could beckon you into the scene fully, so that you lose the perspective needed to help get your hero through it, to a place of light. Darkness wins if we allow it to cover the sight of the Son, just as the storm waves covered Peter.
Grammarly says I wrote: 36,253 words (that it checked) last week. Don’t know if that means anything.
Brian Stansell (aka O'Brian of the Surface World)
I was born in war.
Fighting from my first breath.