No Theory Required

When it comes to managing your time and getting your writing done, no theory or model can help you on its own. Theories and models explain why people usually manage their time. They show how people work, if they get their work done. Knowing the results of research, however, doesn’t make you a better manager of your time. In my opinion and experience with dozens of writers, people learn most if they reflect upon their own habits and learn how to adapt them.

If a theory tells me, for example, that most people work best for three hours, then I’ve learnt something about these people (a particular sample of people who have been investigated with a particular method). If I investigate my own habits and use practical tools in order to find out how to get my work done in time, I learn something about myself. Maybe, I work best when I sit down for three hours as the people from the study do. But maybe the three hours are too long or too short for my needs. In my case, it would be way too long. I work best for one hour only and still get everything done in time as planned.

Instead of giving my clients seemingly tried and true theories and models that they should apply, I give them practical tools to find out for themselves what will work for them. When it comes to writing, no theory or model will tell you how you will work best. Only you can find out with the proper tools. Theories and models are good information to get in lectures and seminars. In writing workshops, however, you will get the practical tools to determine your own experiences.


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