This is what I did yesterday. I'll begin with the more mundane things so you know I'm a well-rounded person and don't think me a cyborg right off the bat.
I walked for an hour, did some kickboxing, emailed with some clients from my freelance editing business, went to the library to return and take out DVDs, set up a festival appearance for the fall to promote The Sisters 8, checked my Amazon ranking, checked the statcounter on my website, reviewed a book on my Amazon blog, went to my daughter's school and read to the kids in her class, watched as she played in the playground afterward, watched the last five minutes of General Hospital, took my daughter to karate, watched one episode of 30 Rock on DVD, watched Frost/Nixon, did some sudoku puzzles, read in between and around it all, went to bed around 12:30 and even remembered to eat a few meals and brush my teeth as required.
I also wrote 34 pages on a new book.
That's the cyborg part.
One of the pages was the title page, but you'd better believe I'm bloody well counting it.
They may not be perfect pages, or even good pages, but for me it's all part of growing a book and it'll give me something to edit when the time comes.
I don't write 34 pages every day, just so you know.
But I do set the bar every day, and I've been doing so ever since I started writing seriously almost 15 years ago. In the beginning, the daily goal was three pages a day. This seemed huge to me at the time, but I got through it each day by telling myself I'd die if I didn't. And somehow I did get through it. In three months, I had the first draft of my first novel (still unpublished).
Everyone I talk to has their own definition of what it is to be a writer. Some say that if you're writing at all, often or rarely, published or not, you're a writer. I'm not here to dispute that. But my own personal definition of a writer, just for me to live by, is that to be a writer, when I'm working on a project I need to show up every day and write. Sometimes projects require a gestation period before getting started, but once started there's no waiting for inspiration or the Muse. There's just me, and the computer, and whatever bar I decide to set myself.
Set that bar.
Sometimes, for whatever reason, you need to set that bar low, so low that you can just step write over it. Sometimes you can afford to set it higher, be more ambitious.
Set that bar.
And now I'm going to go back to watching General Hospital. I won't bore you with the details of what-all else I did today, but you can bet I did a few things, and that I have some fresh pages on the new book.
Be well. Don't forget to write.