One of my aims for 2019 is to find a writing routine that works for me. I generally believe that each project will find its own way of being written, but I’d still like to form better habits around how I structure the days set aside as ‘writing days’. In particular, I’d like to feel better on those days – less worried, less stressed, less guilty – and I’d like to improve my focus. So this is what I’ve been trying during January.
I re-read Hannah Kent’s Burial Rites at the start of this year (which I’d heartily recommend if you’re looking for a good winter read), and in the author’s note at the end, Kent talks about finding herself with all the resources she needed to write, and not a clue how to go about it. So she decided to set a daily target of 1000 words. She’d sit down at her desk in the morning and, whatever happened or however long it took, she’d write 1000 words every day – with the logic that even if it was total nonsense, at least after 100 days, she’d have 100,000 words.
This piece by Emily Holyoake was originally published at The F-Word on 3 May 2017.
ALL THE LITTLE LIGHTS by Jane Upton Presented by Fifth Word and Nottingham Playhouse Saturday 22 April 2017, Theatre Royal Plymouth
Performed by: Esther-Grace Button, Sarah Hoare, Tessie Orange-Turner
Directed by: Laura Ford
It is a relatively quiet final night of Fifth Word and Nottingham Playhouse’s All The Little Lights tour. The Drum, Theatre Royal Plymouth’s black box space, is just over half full and there is an atmosphere of caution among the audience. Jane Upton’s play about “young lives lived under the radar” is brightly, brilliantly funny in parts. But it’s very easy to laugh a split-second too late. This is a birthday party on a knife-edge.