10 Strategies for Improving Writing Productivity
- Plan ahead so that you can defend your research during the semester of your choice. Then, create a checklist with targeted dates for completion. The closer you move toward commencement deadlines, the more motivated you will become to write.
- Being mindful of “active procrastination” (justifying how else you are spending your time.) You will have to say no to some extracurricular activities in order to stay on task!
- Know what time of day you work best. Set aside that time every day to write.
- Talk to your family & friends about the need to protect your writing time. Set limits. Stick to them.
- Start or join a writing accountability group. It's a safe space to talk frankly with your colleagues about your challenges and accomplishments.
- Communicate regularly with your dissertation adviser. One more level of accountability never hurts.
- Peruse writer's handbooks in the library or bookstore. If one resonates with you, buy it. Follow the strategy/advice and don't cheat!
- Write away from home or the office. Attend a writing "boot camp" or writer's retreat.
- Record and celebrate your writing accomplishments. Then get back to work!
- Stop being such a perfectionist! It's OK to show others your drafts, no matter how "ugly" you think that current draft is.
List created by Robin G. Walker, PhD