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One Month in Bali and my 3k/day Challenge

I’m writing this from my coworking space—Hubud, in the center of Ubud, Bali, Indonesia. Wild, huh?

The Hubud Sign, Bali Indonesia |

Ever since I became a writer, I’ve never focused only on my writing. I always had part-time jobs and day jobs taking my attention. Even when I was between gigs, I was focusing on the next thing…and a distracted Lola does not prioritize getting her daily words written.

Now I’m taking a month away from everything—I’m not working and not looking for work, and I don’t even have a TV in the villa I’m renting. After a year of strenuous, full-time editing, this is my reward to myself: unadulterated writing time.

My writing space in Bali |

Writing on my terrace–I could get used to this!

I’ve wasted months with worrying and have barely written a word, so this month, I’m setting concrete goals to make sure I get the most of this precious time.

I’m targeting 3,000 words a day.

Given that I have 24 hours of no scheduling, it should be easy. Even though it’s a steeper hurdle than NaNo pace, I have all the time in the world…piece of cake, right?

Not exactly. I still struggle when I’m not sure where the scene is going, or what themes I want to get across. I might do 500 words in half an hour, or four hours, depending on the state of my focus.

So far, I’m eking it out. If I keep up the pace, I’ll knock off my current novella, and be well on the way to finishing the novel I’ve been toying with for ages. That’s right where I want to be.

I’m hoping that as time goes on and I get used to the rhythm here, my productivity will spike. Can I do 4k a day? 5k? I’ll post about coworking later, but I’m finding the environment super stimulating—the people, workspace, and Bali itself.

Giving myself time to write feels both rewarding and validating. I think we often call ourselves writers, but don’t take it seriously, or are too afraid to take it to a full-time level. I still have doubts, but I’m enjoying my test run,and hitting my word goals is reassuring. I really could crank out the books like a pro, if only I gave myself a chance.

To my writer friends out there, I’m guessing you can do it too.

Have faith, and don’t be afraid to take your goals seriously.