100 percent is impossible on a large scale. If you plan to be a career writer, it's unlikely that every session you sit down to write will be overflowing with creativity. Even the best writers in the business have their off days, though they tend to come less frequently. One of the tricks to having fewer blank page days is to set up a writing routine. And a set writing schedule is most effective when you have a writing sanctuary.
What is a writing sanctuary?
A writing sanctuary is a location in which you will do nothing but write. It's a place where you avoid emails, phone calls, status updates and other distractions. It doesn't have to be the only location you use for writing, but writing must be the only activity you perform there. If you don't have such a writing sanctuary in your life, I recommend you get one.
This week, I signed a contract to rent out a local writing office space. The Writers Workspace is a place for writers to increase that ever important butt-in-chair time. While there is a common area, there are multiple rooms in which talking, eating and other noise pollution are strictly prohibited. The only activity permitted is writing.
I spent my first morning in the space today and it reminded me of study time in my college library. Everyone is focused. Everyone is working. While the only sound in the working area may be the white noise of the ceiling fans, it's a location with a lot of positive energy. It's a perfect place for getting work accomplished.
What's your writing time worth?
I spent $65 on a deposit and $85 for my monthly fee to gain access to the space. If I follow my plan of writing five mornings a week for two hours at a time, the cost will have been more than worth it at around $4 per visit. I'm paying to play and I hope to get a positive return on investment.
Paying for a writing space is like getting a gym membership. It's amazing when you're able to get into a regular routine, but it's a waste of money when you go there once or twice a month. Convincing yourself to leave the house to work out is similar to getting yourself to visit the writing space. You know you'll do the work if you get there. The hardest part is walking through the front door.
If you've been too distracted at home or the coffee shop, find a sanctuary near you. It may be easier than you think.
If you were willing to put some money into your writing space, where might you turn? How much would be too much? What is your writing career worth to you?
Bryan Cohen is the author of more than 30 books, many of which focus on creative writing and blasting through that pesky writer's block. His books have sold more than 20,000 copies. You can find him on Google+ and Facebook.