Monday, May 9, 2016

5 Reasons to Write While Waiting by Guest Karen Lange

Please welcome guest writer, Karen Lange!



5 REASONS TO WRITE WHILE WAITING
BY KAREN LANGE



Think about all the times you’re waiting – on hold on the phone, in the car when picking up the kids, in the bleachers during ice hockey practice, at the doctor’s office - the list goes on. Why not take a few of these spare minutes and get some writing done?
Here are my top five reasons to write while waiting:
  1. It’s a productive use of time.  
I try to use “pockets” of time, those otherwise unused minutes. While I don’t get obsessive and go 24/7, it’s a way to use time more efficiently and make a dent in the to-do list.  Depending on the schedule, it may be the only writing time available that week.
  1. It’s a way to pass the time.
Waiting can be tedious; writing creates a distraction and breaks up the monotony.
  1. It’s a good time to be observant.
Make note of the people, scenery, and activities around you. These notes can offer character, plot, article, and other ideas for later use. Observation teams up well with brainstorming; both are an important part of the writing process.
  1. It’s a way to get a head start on a project.
Need to get an outline together for that upcoming article? Want to scribble plot ideas down before you forget? Sometimes all you need are a few minutes to transfer ideas from head to paper.
  1. It’s a good time to review a piece before submission.
While final proofreading is best done in your quiet writing space, it never hurts to print up your draft and take it along to review on the go. My rough drafts often ride along when I know there will be a few moments to read and edit.  
What do you write while waiting?

Karen Lange is a freelance writer, editor, and blogger, an online writing instructor at the coffeehouseforwriters.com, and the author of Write for Life and Homeschool Co-ops 101. Her articles have been featured in numerous print and online publications. She's a fan of dark chocolate, historical fiction, and hockey. Visit Karen at her blog,karenelange.blogspot.com


32 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I start jotting down things for my blog posts, like reviews and such. Hey, it's still writing!

Tyrean Martinson said...

That's so true!

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Writing bits of dialogue while waiting in the doctor's office helps you to remember great zingers while taking your mind off the visit!! :-)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Agreed!!!

Natalie Aguirre said...

That's a great way to stay productive and less impatient while in line.

Karen Lange said...

I agree Natalie! :)

Karen Lange said...

Roland, my thoughts exactly!

Karen Lange said...

Alex, it sure does count for writing!

Karen Lange said...

Tyrean, thanks so much for hosting me! I love this series! :) It's a great idea.

Yvonne Ventresca said...

Love #3! So true.

Yvonne V

Karen Lange said...

Thanks Yvonne! :) I love to "people watch". So many good ideas there.

Linda O'Connell said...

Great tips, Karen. My husband made a quip that was Reader's Digest funny, and wouldn't you know it, I did NOT write it down, and now neither of us can remember it.

mshatch said...

I would probably do that more if I had a laptop I could bring around with me. Usually, if I know I have to wait, I bring a book.

Karen Lange said...

Linda, well maybe it will come to you - keep a pen and tablet with you at all times! :) lol

Karen Lange said...

MS, I've been tempted to bring my laptop on occasion. Reading is a great alternative too! :)

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

I love #4. I sometimes get caught up in the idea of needing a big chunk of time to accomplish something writing-related when that's really not true at all. :)

Jeanette Levellie said...

Excellent list, Karen! In spare moments I write down ideas for upcoming articles, lists of things to do or purchase, and pithy insights from the Lord.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I use those little pockets of time, too. You can get a lot written in ten minutes.

Chemist Ken said...

I do lots of thinking during my commute. Thanks goodness I have a voice recorder on my phone to record my ideas. A lot safer than trying to write while I drive.

Karen Lange said...

Madeline, I do the same thing! Trying to take advantage of little bits of time when I can. :)

Karen Lange said...

Thanks, Jen! :) Our minds are always working, so why not make the most of it, right?

Karen Lange said...

You're right, Diane; you really can! :)

Karen Lange said...

Ken, now there's an idea I hadn't thought of, using the voice recorder. Thanks for mentioning it. And yeah, a whole lot safer than writing while driving! :)

quietspirit said...

This is a good list. I used to be sure I had something to read when I went to the doctor. Then I started writing. I try to take something with me that I can write on even if it's a small note book.

Karen Lange said...

Cecelia, reading can be creative too! I often take a book and a notebook. :)

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Excellent list, Karen. You make it sound so natural. Why don't I ever remember to do this??? I'm putting a decent notebook in my purse this very second. Thanks!

Karen Lange said...

Joylene,glad you liked it. Some days it comes more naturally to me than others. lol I hope the notebook is a pretty one. :)

Carol Riggs said...

These are all GREAT ideas, and I've used a number of them. I always HATE not writing, but sometimes I do need a break from the actual doing of it. And sometimes if I'm feeling uninterested in writing, just jotting down notes or re-reading something I've written prior will spark me into gear again. :)

Karen Lange said...

Carol, thank you for kind words! I agree, we do need a break sometimes too. Even if not actually writing, our brains are still going, aren't they? :)

lorilmaclaughlin.com said...

Great useful tips! I always keep a pen and paper with me to jot down things that pop into my head. I know from experience that if I don't write them down, they're gone.

Karen Lange said...

Lori,
If only we had a dollar for each time we thought we'd remember those ideas...lol. :) Live and learn, right?

lorilmaclaughlin.com said...

Ha, ha, yes, we'd be rich.