The 33-Minute Way to Beat Writers’ Block
By Ruth Barringham
What do you do when you have to write some articles, but the ideas just aren’t flowing?
You sit and stare at a blank sheet of paper or at a flashing cursor on a blank screen, but nothing happens.
Well, you could pull out your copy of “How to Write an Article in 15 Minutes or less" from /books/15.html and get straight to work because this article writing system doesn’t give you time for writers’ block.
Or if you don’t have a copy of this ebook yet, or you do but you want to push yourself a bit more, then try the 33-minute method of writing.
I first heard about this from the legendary copywriter, Eugene Schwartz, who swore by only working for 3 to 4 hours a day in short stints of 33.33 minutes.
He said he would set his timer for 33.33 minutes and start writing and would not stop until the buzzer sounded. And then he’d take a 5-minute break.
If he didn’t know quite what to write, then he’d go through his notes or whatever else he had written or gathered in preparation for the project he was working on.
But his one rule was that during the 33.33 minutes he couldn’t do anything else except work on his project. So if he didn’t want to do that, then he had to sit and do nothing.
This method of writing worked for him throughout his entire career.
Not only that, but he only worked for 3 to 4 hours a day, but it was enough to earn him millions of dollars.
I was reminded of this recently when I was reading a book about how one writer works. In one chapter she was talking about her writing routine and said that she cut down on how many hours a day she worked when she realised that she could get more done if she only had a spare 90 minutes, than if she had several hours.
She put it down to how much easier it was to sit down and focus when she knew she didn’t have much time. Yet when she had more time she got less done because she was more easily distracted.
And this is what I find as well. The more time I have, the more time I waste. So it’s better for me if I give myself a short limit of two 90 minute sessions to work in, rather than think that I have the whole day.
I found that Eugene Schwartz’ 33-minute writing sessions only work for me if I’m working on a smaller project like writing blog posts.
But when it comes to bigger projects, I need longer writing sessions so that I can do more deep work.
So if you’re having trouble concentrating, try giving yourself shorter deadlines to get things done.
Most of the time I find that it’s not DOING the work that’s hard, it’s just getting started. Once I start working it’s easy to keep going.
So when I have a lot of time to write I let myself get too distracted so that I never start.
But when I’ve only got a small window of opportunity to work, then I don’t have time for procrastination or distraction because I need to get straight down to work.
So when I give myself 90 minutes to see how much I can get done, it works and I can write page after page or research information online without getting distracted by mindless surfing.
Then after a short break, I sit down again and continue for another 90 minutes.
After that, I’m usually done for the day.
How to Write an Article in 15 Minutes or Less
If you can write an aticle in 15 minutes, you can write 6 articles in 90 minutes.