Writing Assignment: Focus On What’s Important

by Randy Murray on October 22, 2010

For the writer, the ability to focus is a critical aspect of the ability to actually produce, to write. Talent, voice, and skill – all these are meaningless without the ability to sit down and actually write.

Part of the development of focus is habit, writing regularly, daily, for extended periods of time. Another, though lesser skill, is the ability to decide where to focus, what to work on. Productive writers can often tell you what they are working on and what they have to work on next. A simple list is the starting point.

In today’s assignment, write a list of your projects, either just your writing projects and aspirations, or your general tasks and to-dos. Stay at a very high level, naming the things you wish to accomplish (the goals), not how you will accomplish them (the steps, the tactics). Once you have completed your initial list, review it and give yourself permission to move items to a “someday” list, leaving only items that you wish to focus on now.

Here’s my example:

  1. Complete and publish “Writing Assignments” book.
  2. Keep client work at a minimum of 20 hours and no more than 30 hours per week.
  3. Write first draft of unnamed non-fiction book with collaborators.
  4. Complete research for novel.
  5. Move physical workouts up to six per week.
  6. Help daughter Jen complete college applications and select school.

You may leave your completed assignment in the comments section below.

Click here to view and complete previous writing assignments

The Writing Assignment: Focus On What’s Important by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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