I guess the question raised here is, How do I write fast and still retain the quality of my work? This is the art that you must perfect as a writer. You must be able to work within tight deadlines and intense pressure. Imagine college homework assignments on steroids. It's kind of like that. Kind of. Here are a few things you can do to stay focused and productive.
- Keep an outline. When you're working within a limited amount of time, it's important to know where you're headed with your book(s). Outline your basic story plot lines. When you're writing to catch up, you'll save a lot of time if all the major plotting is already done. All you have to do is write.
- Stay gold. Don't sacrifice quality for speed. Just because you're writing fast doesn't mean the writing is good. I can write for ten hours at a considerably speedy rate, but if I'm just writing to up my word count, what I'm really doing is regurgitating fluff. It's better to write a little bit less than write a lot more of lower quality work. You'll actually save time by slowing down just a click or two. It will save you rewriting, which is time-consuming.
- Stay quiet. Here's the thing. Even though I am definitely capable of writing in noisy places (my home office isn't always encapsulated in perfect silence...), it's not always the best idea. Sometimes, yes. But not always. If I am totally uninterrupted, I can write from the time I get up to the time I go to bed, and everything I create will be high quality creative awesomeness. Really. It's important to set aside "quiet time" to get the heart of your writing done every day. Especially when you're working with a tough deadline.
- Get your hours in. As a writer, I was actually finding myself losing track of how many hours I worked a day. Was it ten? Was it thirteen? I don't know. They all kind of meshed together...So I decided to fix the problem. I made sure I got so many hours of writing in every day, and in those hours I was to meet a word count goal. Then I could move onto other tasks, such as editing and all that good stuff. I started off in high school by working at least four hours a day. These days my itinerary has grown and it takes anywhere from six to ten hours to get everything done. Sometimes longer.
- Don't force it. Last but not least, if you're not feeling it, don't force it. Sometimes it can take me a full hour to warm up to writing something, so I take that "warm up" time to write something else. Then I come back to my primary task. It assures quality work and keeps my creative though process limber.