Secrets of a Writing Habit, Pt. 2: Stick Some Fun on It

Honestly, who wants to write if it isn’t fun? 

So you want to build a writing habit. Good for you! This is the second in a three-part series sharing the only things I know about building habits that stick around for longer than just a few minutes. Enjoy!


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Make it fun, the habit-forming experts (of which I am not one) say. Injecting this mysterious ingredient called fun into everything seems like a skill that other people might have, but I certainly don’t. What about you?

If you’re like me, and find it annoying when people say “Have fun with it,” and don’t tell you how, I have an idea.

Truth: Writing Isn’t Always Fun

Sometimes writing is damn frustrating. It’s hard. It can make you feel really, really stupid. Like the most boring two-bit storyteller that ever had the audacity to sit down and type words. Doesn’t really sound like something you’d want to build a habit on, does it?

Stick Fun Stuff Onto It

Remember eight grade science class, when you learned about the very first human model of the atom? Designed by Lord Kelvin and J.J. Thomson, it looked a bit like a blueberry muffin, with one huge neutral mass and electronics stuck all over it at random. Actually, it reminded everybody of sweets and was officially nicknamed the “plum pudding model.”

Kind of like this.
Kind of like this.

Your writing habit’s the same. It honestly is that simple.

Stick fun stuff in it. I use:

  • coffee
  • dessert
  • running
  • gardening
  • and good background movie noise (my current favorite background noise movie is The Fellowship of the Ring).

Why?

I tend to make the best habits when I’m looking forward to doing something, and I’m pretty sure that’s actually Habit-Forming 101. If an experience is enjoyable, you’ll keep doing it. And when you tag writing to an enjoyable experience (I write and then go for a run to clear my head, then write some more OR: I’ve paired together coffee and writing so closely now that when I have coffee I look around for my laptop, Pavlov-style), you can build a habit’s foundation. Painlessly!

What could you do, besides develop super literary powers, to make your writing times more fun? Share in the comments.