Discussion Time: How to Set Aside Time for Your WIP (and Not Get Distracted)

If you’re anything like me then you know how much of a b***h procrastination can be, even when it comes to something I love as much as writing and as much as my current WIP there’s always that small voice in the back of my mind saying; “you still have plenty of time left, you can get around to that later”. But “later” never comes.

I’ve always been this way, and it seems like blogging has been the only aspect of my life that’s escaped my procrastination tendencies because in the run up to the start of a November and the start of NaNoWriMo when I should be working on my WIP plan I’m consistently putting it off.

How to Set Aside Time for Your WIP

How to Set Aside Time for Your WIP (and Not Get Distracted)

If anyone has any tried and true methods for putting a stop to procrastination all together please let me know. Like I said earlier this isn’t a recent thing for me and I’m not sure how it doesn’t apply to blogging but I also don’t know how to replicate it to apply it to my WIP.

I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again, I’m a very organised person. I have a schedule for blogging so why don’t I have a schedule for my WIP? The short answer is I don’t know, but if I’ve found something that works for blogging I’m sure I can find something that will work just as well for my WIP. In the end it’s all about time management, and that’s something I can be very good at when I put my head to it.

Milestones Write Tag (4)

Step one to managing my procrastination is to create a schedule and stick. To. It!

One of this things that gets me every single time is the Internet. Sometimes I can lie to make myself feel a little better about the fact that it’s been another day and I still haven’t got any planning done; I’ll tell myself I was looking on Pinterest to find aesthetic images for my WIP because that counts as research doesn’t it? But that’s a lie because I’ll start looking on Pinterest for aesthetic images, and before too long I’ll fall down that black hole and find myself miles away from where I started looking at bullet journal pages for the bullet journal I keep meaning to start but never get around to (again procrastination is a b***h).

The Rising Author Tag (5)

Then there’s just the mindless Internet, where even I can’t fool myself that scrolling through Tumblr or Facebook (I never go on Facebook, that’s when you can tell my procrastination tendencies have reached new heights) is technically research for my WIP so it technically counts.

So step two is going to be to turn the Internet off on my laptop, because clearly I can’t trust myself with it on.

Something I’ve learnt about procrastination, and I’m not sure if this applies to everyone or just me, is that I just need to get started. Once I sit down and actually start working on my WIP I really get into the zone, and then it’s hard to stop working. It’s actually the same with other aspects of my life, when I’m in the middle of a reading slump sometimes all I need to do is push myself past the first chapter, and I’ll find my slump was nothing more than a disguised form of procrastination.

The final step, step three, is going to be to force myself to start writing, because I know once I do I’ll find my desire to procrastination fade away.

Astraea Aesthetic

(Again though I’m not sure if this will work for everyone.)

So my three step plan to beat procrastination is very simple, and it should be easy to follow, but who wants to bet I fail at the first hurdle? When it comes down to it I think everyone has that desire to put things off, it’s just whether you decide to ignore that voice whispering, “you can get around to that later”, or give in. I’ve always been one to give in, but now I need to identify that voice and say back, “no”.

Now Onto the Discussion Part of This Post:

Is procrastination something you find yourself doing a lot, or are you able to ignore that voice when you hear it whispering?

Do you have a schedule for working on your WIP, or do you just write whenever you feel like it?

What tips have you found that help you get started on whatever it is your procrastinating?

Have you ever fallen down a Pinterest black hole when searching for aesthetic images for your WIP?

Let me know in the comments below.

35 thoughts on “Discussion Time: How to Set Aside Time for Your WIP (and Not Get Distracted)

  1. Really great and fitting post for NaNo! 💗 I think my biggest problem is always giving myself the push to just START, because once I do, things usually flow (if there are no big distractions), so I need to find a way to really get myself to start without thinking about it too much 😅

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Caro. 🙂 ❤ Yeah I tend to struggle when it comes to the start of my writing as well, but once I have a few hundred words down I don't want to stop, I'm at that stage now. I'm dedicating time to blogging but I really want to get back to writing again! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is the most relatable post i’ve ever read in my life, you’ve described my WIP life down to the very last detail?????? omg I have zero self-control when it comes to aesthetic boards, I think I’ve spent more time making aesthetics than actually writing *hides*

    also, I’m so bad at planning mdlkjfklsjfs it’s extremely sad, because even if I do plan to write my WIP I usually get swept away with something else like Goodreads. + I have to force myself to write instead of read, because if I have a book or fan fiction open on my browser, it’s all over D:

    but I’m absorbing all of these tips for a better writing life!!!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I’m glad you enjoyed this post Malanie, and yeah these are standard writing problems but they definitely affect all of us at least once (or in my case every time I try to write). I’ve spent more time on aesthetic boards than I have planning my NaNoWriMo WIP, and November is next week!
      I’m struggling to get in the planning mindset (probably because I’ve never attempted planning a WIP before) but I get that because if I have a book I want to get back to or the internet nearby I fold.
      That’s good, finger’s crossed they’ll help us both as we continue trying to write! 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ahh, this is a great and helpful post, Beth! I definitely need tips on how to stay focused on actually working on my WIP. I think I’ll actually create a schedule now that you mention it — I used to do it and I can’t say it completely worked, but I got more work done than I am now! And I definitely agree with the internet thing — going on the internet is my BIGGEST distraction, and eliminating that would be so productive for me. (Sometimes I need to use it for research, though, so I just rely on my willpower… which is not so strong 😂) You’ve got me really pumped to create a schedule and write though — I love this post!! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much May, and I’m really glad this post helped you too. Of all the things I’ve tried scheduling is what works the best for me. Even just having a set time each evening when I should be writing means it’s harder to procrastinate and skip past it without feeling guilty.
      Yeah on one hand the internet is brilliant for writing resources and things like that, but on the other it’s a nice distraction. My internet actually went down on the Sunday, and I ended up getting so much done.
      That’s great to hear, and thanks so much. 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Wonderful post,Beth! Procrastination is the worst, really, ahah and the hardest thing, just like you said, is to just start and get into it. once you’re in the zone, it’s all good and if I manage not to get too distracted by other things or the outside world or any incoming notification, I’m all good, too…. it’s just a matter of being able to ignore everything else around and really focus hahaha 🙂
    Best of luck for NaNo!! Also, are these all of your aesthetics? They look SO GOOD.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Marie. 🙂 Yeah I feel like I know once I get started it will be so easy to get into the zone when it comes to my WIP and procrastination will be a non-issue, it’s just convincing myself to get started that’s the hard part. Ha, yeah I’ve never been very good at ignoring everything around me. 😀
      Thanks so much, and yeah these are my aesthetics for my current WIP/s, thanks again. 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hello Beth!!!

    I absolutely know what you mean in that I am very organized in certain aspects of my life (such as my career and recently blogging and writing) while very disorganized in other aspects of my life (such as chores and finances). I think it comes down to making it a habit! I think we have a pretty good habit when it comes to keeping our blogs updated. I know that my readers expect my posts and I’m used to spending weekends writing posts, so I never question the fact that I have to do it. As for writing, I find that I’m more productive when I view it as a “must do” for the day rather than a “can do”. When I write a bit every day, I find that it becomes part of my life and I feel guilty when I don’t write haha 🙂

    Internet is such a black hole! I am so guilty of spending way too much time on Pinterest! The hard part is that our intention is to be productive (by searching pictures for our character and setting aesthetics) but then it is easy to get distracted! (By the way, those are beautiful aesthetics <3) I try to be aware when I'm spending too much time on Pinterest and not being productive. I ended up cutting out Facebook all together haha xD

    You're so right that the hardest part is to start a task! I feel the same way in that once I get into planning or writing, it is hard to stop. What I noticed is that I'm nervous to write on a blank page, and that it's actually easier for me to continue on from a prior scene rather than start a brand new document.

    Hope planning is going well!! I'm SO excited for Nanowrimo (and also freaking out hahaha) 😀 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel like in some aspects I’d like to swap parts of my life around, be more organised when it comes to writing and less organised when it comes to other things which aren’t as important (can’t think of any examples but you know what I mean). Yeah that makes sense I guess I just need to keep at it and make writing a habit rather than a hobby, then I’ll hopefully be able to stick to a schedule. 🙂
      That’s actually what’s happening to me, now I say I have one hour a day (at least) where I write I feel guilty if I miss out on it.
      Oh I always say I could spend hours looking for aesthetic images on Pinterest, but in reality it’s probably only about 10 minutes before I go on some wild Pinterest tangent. It’s an easy trap to fall into, and thanks so much Sophie. 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sounds like you’re already making writing a habit, and 10 minutes is a worthwhile amount of time to spend on Pinterest when it comes to creating our character aesthetics! Let’s both keep up the good habits and I think we can ace Nanowrimo 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Well that was the goal, and yep. I’ve saved plenty of images for aesthetics from a collection of a few 10 minutes a couple of times a day, so kind of worthwhile I suppose.
        I’m sure we’ll both be able to get to the 50K word goal (in fact I wouldn’t be surprised if you managed more than 50K!) 😀 ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I’ll try my best this November haha. To be honest it’s going to be a hectic month! I have a week off when I am flying back to visit my family so I’ll be writing on the plane and during my vacation (I’m hope that that would boost my word count!? but who knows, lol 🙂 ) We’ll see how it goes! How do you think November will be like for you?

        Liked by 1 person

      4. God I know the feeling. I feel like I have so much going on in November on top of NaNoWriMo. Still I guess it’s all part of the fun of trying to write a novel in a month right? Writing on planes and holidays always seems to boost my word Clint (more than just writing at home or on a normal day you know?)

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Haha yeah 🙂 Life still goes on but we will figure out a way!
        I had a good experience writing on flights before. I like that there are less distractions (literally nothing to do except sleep or write!) So I am looking forward to seeing how it will go this time around 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I really need to stop procrastinating when it comes to my writing, too. I literally have the same thoughts you mentioned in this post. I’m so bad at sticking to schedules, though. I’m just so bad at estimating how much time I think I’ll need for everything that I have to work on. I have started to get better, though. I make myself sit down for an hour on Monday’s Wednesdays and Fridays to do something writerly.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s something I keep saying but I never seem to learn, and oh I get what you mean because I’m really bad at estimating time as well. I always think things will take quicker than they actually do, and then when I (of course) fall behind I get stressed which helps no one. For me actually saying I’ll sit down and start writing had helped, it’s having that set time in my head when I know I should be writing that kind of kick starts me into actually doing it. I hope it works for you too. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Great post Beth! Ah, the good ol’ procrastination! I have a friend who was determined to get through NaNoWriMo (I don’t know if she succeeded or not) but she was going to buy herself an old laptop and not connect the Internet to it so that she could just write… like I say, I don’t know if it worked, but it seems like a good start right? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Meghan. 😀 Oh you’ll have to let me know if that did work. The internet is a black hole for me, if my laptop is connected I can never get anything done, but I guess I need to learn because I can’t just keep putting things off until I have no internet connection. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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