Challenge,  On Writing

Interesting Lesson…

That Took Me Time To Learn With Exercise…

But might help some of you with writing.

I have two great friends who are on streaks of so many steps every day, both over 4,000 steps a day on bad days, usually a bunch over that. But they each have a minimum number. So does Kris and she never misses.

The guys have been going out every day, regularly, getting steps. We are reporting to each other and being supportive. They were very supportive of my marathon extreme day.

I did 55,000 plus steps last Saturday completing a marathon.

One of them did more steps in six days and the other did more steps in five days than I have done in the same six days, counting the marathon.

Let that sink in.

And Kris beats us all with her regular running and walking and weekly step count.

So the lesson for me is clear, and what I am going to do shortly with exercise. Steady and regular beats giant lumps and then nothing because I am too sore to walk.

I knew that lesson in other areas like writing, but it became very clear this week in exercise as well.

So apply that to writing, folks. No writer I know thinks they write enough on any given day or week or month or year. It is a broken record almost every writer repeats over and over and over and over and over…

Writers wait for that big open time, then try to push, and always end up disappointed. It is never enough.

But just doing some writing every day can really add up to a lot more. I know that with writing, it is how I get so much done, a bit here, a bit there, regularly, over time. Kris calls me a “stealth writer” because things just appear when I am going normally. And you almost never hear me complain about not getting enough writing done. (I complain about other things, zero doubt, but seldom that. (grin))

Took me this week to finally get that marathon goal out of my way, and get to doing regular and sane exercise levels daily. Just as I do with my writing.

A lesson that a few take to writing, but not many. Just easier to complain about not getting enough done than to find a few minutes to do a little every day.



  • Susan Parker

    … and the irony is that if the time taken and the number of words written on social media to complain about the lack of writing progress were instead used to progress the current project, there would be less to complain about!

  • Geetanjali

    Wow – this is such a simple but powerful lesson that I really needed to hear today. I constantly wait for long weekends and long stretches of time when I can get writing done, but recently, thanks to you Dean, I started a streak of working daily, and I can feel it adding up. I am getting more done in these small daily sprints than I would get done on a good writing day when I have several hours at a stretch. I have been feeling though – this is not enough, I am barely making any progress, etc. This post just put my mind at ease (and made me question why I am not getting more exercise!)

  • T Thorn Coyle

    Great reminder, Dean.

    I learned that with my “writing weeks” where several of us would go away and get sometimes whole novels out in a week. I always needed to recover after, and my writing would slump.

    Now, when I do a virtual “writing week” I just up my steady wordcount to slightly higher, for greater focus. But I don’t aim for huge numbers.

    I walk every day, and I write every day. That steadiness helps me more than the great bursts–even though I *like* bursts. I often call myself a “sprinter”. But I need to sprint a little every day. This ends up making me a long-hauler, which is kind of funny to me.