Atomic Habits

I read a lot of fiction as every fiction writer should. But I make time for selected nonfiction. I’m currently reading Atomic Habits by James Clear. Books and podcasts like this help me focus on my goals.

There’s nothing earth shattering in the book, except concision. Clear takes the theories and methods of others and makes them concise with actionable steps. I highly recommend the book for anyone trying to make small changes.

“You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems.” James Clear.

Rather setting a goal, you are encouraged to create specific systems to reach the goal. If your goal is to write a book, you must create specific, actionable daily habits. For example, everyday I will wake up at 5 am and write five pages at my office computer.

In all practicality, I struggle to take my medicine each day and brush my teeth before bed. Using the methods at the beginning of the book, so far I’ve taken all my pills and brushed my teeth multiple days in a row. What else could I accomplish this way?

Audio Learning

A writerly friend gifted me a year’s subscription to MasterClass and it has been AWESOME! I watch a lesson or two or ten each day as I’m getting ready for the day or cooking or some other mindless task.

I’m making my through many of the writing classes led by Neil Gaiman, David Baldacci, Dan Brown, Margaret Atwood, and many others. I’ve gained some insights into my own writing process or ways to bolster my current writing project.

Occasionally, I’ll watch a non-writing course. Anna Wintour’s discussion of her role at Vogue and Conde Nast publishing was interesting. Bobbi Brown changed the way I apply makeup. Spike Lee talks about his writing process.

Next I’ll explore some of the cooking lessons. Who doesn’t want to learn knife skills from Gordon Ramsey?