Christmas is a double-sided affair; a generous and loving period to spend with your loved ones and a stressful event consisting of running around trying to make everyone happy. December 2021 has dumped a whole new layer of stress on top of this Christmas cake with its rules, isolation, desire to keep things ‘normal’ and make everyone happy. With all of these expectations and limitations, this festive season can make finding the time or energy to write almost impossible. This week, we have some tips to keep you sane and creative during the holidays.
Release Your Expectations
With so much uncertainty and chaos, sticking to lofty word counts or schedules consistently is almost impossible. Some of you may want to make a small goal for yourself, which is entirely okay, but forgive yourself if you don’t reach that goal. There is already enough social pressure this Christmas season - don’t let your WIP add to that.
Try To Make Time For Writing
We have discussed this in our writing tips series on our social media, but making time to write is crucial. It doesn’t have to be a long session - even five minutes is perfect. Maybe squeeze a bit in while you’re having your morning cuppa or just before bed. Doing a little bit whenever you can is more than enough.
Take Inspiration From The Season
Winter is such a fabulous time of the year. There is so much to love about it; long walks in the cold, pretty decorations in shop windows, and mugs of hot chocolate and marshmallows under a blanket are just some of the things to look forward to. Inspiration for self-indulgent comforting short stories or perilous wintery scenes can be found - you just have to know where to look.
Look Back At Old WIPs
Finding the time or energy to write something entirely new may be challenging this year. Looking back at or tinkering with old unfinished work can be the perfect springboard for creativity. Perhaps you could rework that ancient manuscript, or you could tighten up the middle of that short story. You may even rediscover an old favourite that you had never gotten around to finishing. Find comfort in past work and appreciate how far you have come.
Check-In With Your Writer Friends
Isolation can be stimulating or stifling to your creativity. While we do recommend having some alone time to rest, making time to speak to your writer friends could bring some much-needed joy into this dark wintery period. Maybe you could all arrange for a writing workshop or drunken writing prompts night over Zoom to get your words flowing. Compare notes on books you have all read and check out their recommendations. Maybe you’ll find some unexpected inspiration after having a chat with your friends.
Remember To Rest
Christmas is a busy time - so busy, in fact, that it can be easy to forget just to breathe. Resting is just as crucial to your creativity as writing is. For those of us who write regularly, it may be that you take a complete break from writing; that’s okay! 2021 has been a mammoth year, and you deserve to take it easy.
Happy holidays, everyone! Well done for working so hard this year - we’re proud of you for making it. We hope these tips help you stay sane and happy while you write this Christmas time.