M.A. Wohl

Writer on a Quest

It is not a weird name for a simple writing session. I really mean doing a slow writing sprint. Writing as much as possible in a 2 hours top period of time.

I often read about writing sprints sessions, how some authors swear by them.
I tried a few times, both with a group of people and alone. Results:
I find writing sprints very stressful. Also, I am not fond of competition. And since I genuinely write fewer words in an hour then, I’d say, 90% of the authors I follow or see on the Twitter-verse. Therefore, I am always on the « loser » side of those sprints.
I hate that self-imposed deprecating feeling I can’t control, nor easily make disappear.

I then decided to loosen up the writing sprint rules to fit my writing process, while forcing me to write more, if not faster.

Here’s my list of point to respect while doing a slow writing sprint:

  • Secure some time for a slow writing sprint session (2 hours top)
  • Brainstorm several days ahead of time (Vivien Reis, whom I like very much, recommended in one video I can’t retrace – she made several of them – to try and always think about your story; I say thinking of a story while kiddo is asking for absolutely everything in its reach is dang impossible for me)
  • Clear all distractions before starting the writing sprint
  • Create a writing mood to avoid losing time of the dreaded writer’s block
  • Don’t forget your non-alcoholic drink (time to sprint, not unwind)
  • No research, no backstories, no looking endlessly for characters names
  • Check the word count only once every half-hour, or not at all if you’re strong enough
  • No ticking timer allowed (when those things ring and I am in the middle of writing a scene, it fridgin’ scares the be-geez out of me).

During slow writing sprint, I also do not edit or revise, but I do go back to fix the story timeline for example, and other small details I am likely to forget if I don’t tackle on the spot.

I hope you find this weird twist on an old writing tip useful. Or maybe you are already doing something similar.

Anyway, I hope it helps. Thanks for reading this post. Until next time!

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