From Sarah, With Joy

Writer querying two novels and some other word babies. I tend to effervesce.

New post every Monday

Monday, March 17, 2014

Smart You vs. Dumb You


We as modern writers have a lot of wide-ranging things on our list of responsibilities. We pitch to editors, interact on social media, blog, query agents, submit to literary magazines, do different types of marketing and publicity. And of course, we write.

Some of these activities take a lot of brain power. Particularly the actual writing. But we all have days when we feel like we're in a mental fog, and are just too exhausted or stressed or sick to do anything that requires a lot of mental effort. However, if we sort and prioritize our time effectively, we can be productive both on the days when we feel smart as well as the days when we're feeling...not so smart.

Take advantage of Smart Days (or even just average days) to get a lot of writing done. That is the most important thing, obviously. You also want to be on the top of your game when you're writing an agent query or magazine article pitch.

Keep in mind, too, that you can set things up to make things easier for yourself when you're having a Dumb Day. If you keep a list of blog topics then if you're having a day when you're brain just isn't working right you have a list to fall back on.

And if you have a pitch or query already written, then the heavy lifting is done and you can send out pitches and queries even when you're feeling squeezed. Other things you can do on not-so-smart days include scheduling things up for social media (looking up funny cat pictures might be just the right activity for Dumb Days anyway). You can read and comment on blogs and let other peoples smarts lift you up a bit.

Hopefully these ideas can help you keep some momentum even on doldrums days. Any other ideas for things you can make progress on when the mental juices aren't flowing?

Write on!

Sarah Allen

(image source)

10 comments:

  1. Definitely having a list of things you can work on during those dumb moments helps.

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  2. I definitely need to start keeping a list of things to blog about. Every day is a dumb blogging day for me. I'd much rather look at cat pictures. ;)

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  3. I definitely leave my first draft projects for my off (aka dumb lol) days. I'm much more able to work on the first draft on those days. I think my energy on smart days is best used for editing (the weakness I'm working on strengthening!)

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  4. As far as blogging goes, a list is a good idea. I have several times thought of something to write about, not made a note and then later have no idea what it was. I then wish I had forgotten that I had had an idea at all.

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  5. As far as blogging goes, a list is a good idea. I have several times thought of something to write about, not made a note and then later have no idea what it was. I then wish I had forgotten that I had had an idea at all.

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  6. Great tips.

    Sometimes a 'dumb day' means I need a rest. That can go a long way toward productivity, too. ;)

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  7. And I thought it was just me swing back and forth between smart and not-so-smart.

    I feel better and I've jotted down a few of your ideas to get me through. You're a doll. :-)

    Anna from Shout with Emaginette

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  8. Good to make hay while the sun shines. Actually I always feel more enthusiastic about writing when it's literally sunny out. Unfortunately I live in England.

    mood
    Moody Writing

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  9. All good ideas. Thanks for sharing. I seem to be having more dumb days than smart days lately (typos where I... I don't even), but I'm hoping the fog lifts soon. I have a busy month ahead!

    Alex Hurst, fantasy author in Kyoto, participating in Blogging A-Z April Challenge

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I absolutely love hearing from you! Thank you so, so much for your thoughts and comments, they really do make my day. Consider yourself awesome. Also, I do my best to respond to every comment within 24 hours, so I invite you to come back and continue the conversation :)

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