First, when I focused on increasing my pace, I was successful. I could sit down and write more quickly than before. Primarily this was the result of shutting down online distractions: Twitter, Reddit, and Facebook, to name the chief culprits. The second thing I used was a modified version of the Pomidoro Technique: setting an egg timer (or iPhone timer in my case) and writing nonstop for increasingly longer periods of time.
Second, although my word count and the length of time I was writing increased, I found that I wasn’t really living up to the Pomidoro Technique methodology. The idea is you spend 25 minutes working, then 5 minutes on break. I would get up to get some food or check those time-wasting sites, and then my 5 minute break would explode into something much longer. So that lead to my second discovery: I need to be more disciplined and set timers for my breaks as well. Otherwise, I will procrastinate far too much. However, recording stopping and starting times has really helped me be aware of how often I did this. I think if I wasn’t recording my data, I wouldn’t have been able to come to these conclusions.
Lastly, I wondered, was what I produced any better, or was speed making it worse? Well, in addition to my freelance writing and working on my novel, I’ve been working on some short stories as well. I sent a recent one off for publication, and it was rejected. But the good news? I got a little note appended to the rejection e-mail saying that the editor liked my idea.
So is my writing getting better? Yes and no, I guess. I got rejected, and that sucks, but he liked my idea. I guess that means that I’m getting better at creating stories. I just need to work on improving my execution. Well, (deliberate) practice makes perfect. I’m sure this won’t be the last update. I’ll keep you posted as things progress.