Zabowska's Blog

October 13, 2009

Developing Habits of the Mind

Filed under: Uncategorized — zabowska @ 11:48 pm

   I have been reading a wonderful book entitled Page After Page by Heather Sellers. I am
finding what she says about the writer’s life to be very wise and instructive. So, for the
next few weeks, I will be blogging about her material and how I plan to be taking on
some of the wisdom that she is proclaiming.

  Today, I was reading about the importance for writers to write. It sounds very, very
simple and easy but it is hard. It seems that writers will do anything to stay away from
writing proper. We will read, write, think, plan, ponder, do library research, and just
plain mope around. But actually sitting down and writing now that’s a different animal

  I find her book to be very uplifting. She believes that almost everyone can write good
stuff. All we have to do is sit down, conjure a state of complete dedication and complete
openness and write. Yes, my friends, we have to actually put pen to paper. Sounds easy.
But very, very hard for a lot of writers to actually do.

  But how do can writers conjure a state of complete dedication and openness in order to
write? Well, it seems that all the preparation in terms of pen, paper, place, desk,
computer, is all easy. It is the habits of the mind that are so hard to develop. Writing
requires that we develop certain habits of the mind. That is what is so hard to get right
and to sustain for any length of time.

  I believe that developing those habits of the mind take a long time. Your life must
somehow revolve around your writing and your writing must be central to it in order
for you to succeed as a writer. A writer must devote a certain portion of their time and
day to actual writing in order for the manuscripts to be written.  There is nothing really
stupendous about this observation. Most writers have made it at one time or another.
Its actually doing it that is the problem.

  I found with myself that to develop those habits of the mind I had to write each and
every day for the first while. I had to sit down and just write. No excuses, no nonsense
and no distractions. I had to let the phone be answered by the answering machine. I had
to not bother answering email or cruising the INTERNET. I just had to write.

  In addition, I had to write before I got busy and did anything else in the day as often as
I could. So, in my case, I would wake up around 5 a.m. and head to my study to write
for a couple of hours before I had to get ready and get out to work. And I had to do that
most days. On weekends, I did the same so that I could actually write consistently. And
I wrote a lot of manuscripts, articles, and stories in the process. When you put in the
time, the writing does get done. Its just setting that time and sticking to it. I believe that
is what develops the habits of the mind that writers need in order to write.



  1. Sunny,

    You have a very disciplined mind, my friend. And you do produce manuscripts, seemingly out of thin air. I must dty for your dedication and discipline to get those pieces fiished that sit idle and abandoned on those back burners.

    Good thoughts which you sprinkled in the paths of visiting writers. Thank you for your words.


    Comment by claudsy — October 14, 2009 @ 3:14 am | Reply

    • Claudsy,

      I don’t doubt that you already have the discipline. It is just waiting to be pruned and tailored to your life and your goals. Just keep positive and it will all work out in the end!

      Keep reading my blog over the next few weeks. You will learn a lot more about the writer’s life. I look forward to hearing from you later.

      Take care,

      Comment by zabowska — October 15, 2009 @ 7:18 am | Reply

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