What is sprinting? You decide to write either alone or collectively during a specific time period - an hour or two. There is no social media allowed during this time and you better have hit the potty and refilled your coffee cup as well. Penalties help if you need motivation - shaming, dollars in the dinner fund, etc. This isn't a new idea. But recently, Anna Adams and Melinda Curtis rediscovered the joys of sprinting together. They've decided to let you in on their sprinting sessions where they tag each other through text messages.
Anna: Here's how we start. Usually, it's me pinging Melinda.
Melinda: (Clearly this screenshot is from my phone where I identify myself by my puppy's picture - Anna, I need a picture of you.) We check in after an hour. Please note that Anna always has more words than I do in the first hour. I suck wind in the first hour (either that or she's fudging numbers...hhmmm).
Anna: I'd never fudge numbers! But I do fudge. Social media. I take a second to scan Twitter or FB. I answer texts from my daughter or the phone or door. But I'm painfully aware of our more honest friend, Melinda, out there, having collected her coffee and made sure she won't be slacking a second of the hour, and that gets me back to work. Otherwise a second of slacking could easily turn into hours of procrastination.
Melinda: Okay, apologies. I'm slow (the irony of sprinting, I suppose - she's the hare, I'm the tortoise). Even when we edited together you blew right by me page-wise. This second shot indicates I'm editing and Anna is racking up the words (despite all her distractions).
Anna: I don't think Melinda gives herself enough credit. Sometimes I'm faster. Sometimes, I'm asking why I don't run away and start a new online identity, so I don't have to 'fess up to Melinda how little work I've managed to complete. Oh--that's the biggest benefit of sprinting to me. Accountability. I work harder, knowing I have to tell Melinda how hard I'm working.
And now your turn: Whether it's writing or a household chore, what do you do to make things go faster or easier? We know we'll hear a lot from Heartwarming writers, but any other writer or reader who comments is in the running to win a $5 gift card (either to Amazon from book-crazy Anna or from Starbucks from coffee-crazy Melinda).
Anna Adams and Melinda Curtis, along with their friend, Anna Stewart, have the pleasure of writing the first novella collection for the Harlequin Heartwarming line. Christmas, Actually is set in Christmas Town where local tradition has it that a kiss underneath the town square gazebo on Christmas Eve means wedding bells for the couple in the new year. Follow the highs and lows of the Banning siblings as they journey toward a happy holiday with a bonus kiss!