Come the summer, our thoughts naturally turn to holidays, or vacations, or whatever word you have for a longish period of time off. Many things get put on the back burner to accommodate this and that can include writing. But that doesn’t mean you stop wanting to write. After all for many of us, a holiday means you finally have more time (whole days!) to write. So what to do? Well here’s some advice on how to write on holiday.
1) Read instead
Sorry, it’s the old bait and switch! Yes this first tip isn’t about writing at all. But it is about that other fun thing we writers love – reading! Holidays can be the perfect time to catch up on your ever increasing TBR pile. So gather up those neglected lovelies and dig in. Whether your reading leads you to jot down some words or not, doesn’t really matter. Because remember, all good writers must be also be great readers. In fact there are many ways you can “write” without writing.
2) Try some exercises
Not of the weight-lifting-dancing-Zumba kind (although exercising can help you write). No, I’m talking writing exercises. There are prompts absolutely everywhere online and offline on websites and magazines. These will keep your writing brain satisfied without the added pressure that might come from trying to focus on your Work in Progress.
3) Use the Cloud
I often advise using one of these for writing when out and about. It’s a simple way to make it easy to write wherever you are. Rather than lugging about heavy laptops or faffing around transferring and emailing files about, you save your work into a Cloud and so you can access it wherever you can log in. Just remember to keep your information secure by using strong passwords, two step sign-in and logging out of any shared computers you may use.
4) Plan before you go
You may want to write as and when the inspiration hits. But if you’d prefer to definitely get some writing in, then planning what you’d like to do before you go can help. It also lets you feel like you’ve achieved something when you reach your goal. And if you go over, it’s a bonus. One thing I would suggest is to keep it simple with something like a few hundred words, a poem or some character outlines. So you don’t stress yourself out.
5) Go on a writers retreat
Mix writing with a holiday? Sounds perfect! Of course there are a few considerations with this, such as family commitments and cost. It could be worth a thought or two if you have the ability to try one. I’ve also got a blog post about how you can do a DIY writing retreat that may be of interest.
6) Give yourself permission not to write
Writing can be holiday fun for a lot of us. But don’t forget that you’re also allowed to do other things on holiday. After all your brain and your body need a rest from time to time. And they need new experiences. This time to recharge and refresh will help your writing whether you end up bashing out some words on holiday or not. So