I've always been an early morning writer trapped in a world where getting up early is far from the norm. In the distant past, a higher percentage of people rose at dawn due to longer working hours and more common light-requiring jobs like farming. Nowadays, people give you a strange look when you say you're getting up early as they say, "Well, that sucks." I love getting up early and I think that an early morning writer is frequently the most efficient writer possible.
The first step to becoming an early morning writer is to train yourself to get up right away on one alarm. I suggest that you put your alarm clock as far away from your bed as possible. This way, you have to wake up a little, instead of instinctively reaching over and hitting the snooze. Another tip is to place a note like "Remember to write this morning!" on or near your alarm, once again forcing your brain into action. You can also try adding an enervating task to your wakeup routine, such as splashing your face with water after you turn off your alarm.
Next, you need to give yourself enough energy to begin your writing. This doesn't need to be a large amount of energy here, it isn't about keeping you up the entire time, just about getting you enough to let you write the first sentence. I recommend a small breakfast, a walk around the block or some other short workout, or a quick shower. I do not recommend coffee or any other caffeine, for reasons I lay out here, here and here. Besides, caffeine tends to make you tired the next day, making any morning routine more difficult.
The boost of energy to get you through your entire morning writing routine, comes from purpose, not from drugs. Create a worthy writing goal for yourself that will make you want to write. Set a word count, page number, chapter or time limit goal for each session. My current goal is to write 2,500 words a day for 365 days straight, but you don't have to pick something quite as ambitious if you don't want. Come up with apositive achievable goal and then write it down. Study the goal before you begin each morning as well as before you go to sleep. This will help you to lock the goal into your subconscious and to make you more excited about it.
Once you've tamed your snoozing tendencies, increased your energy without caffeine and locked in your goal, it's time to be the early morning writer you knew you could be. Need an additional morning boost, try my book of essays on writing, Sharpening the Pencil: Essays on Writing, Motivation and Enjoying Your Life.
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