It is no secret by now that my kind of writing sessions had always been long and torturing. Since I have to juggle with my day job and other side projects, I can only focus 100% on writing if I were to write non-stop. And that often translates into 5-7 hours of writing non-stop in front of my laptop, spare for that several times I go to the restroom or to refill my water bottle.
Now I have to admit, writers all around the globe have found a way or two to make this process a little more bearable. Training your brain into a specific writing rituals, for example, helps to program your mind to get into that “writing mood” easier. And the better your mood is, the better chance you’ll have to write consistently every day.
But while a set of writing rituals could help you get into the momentum every single day of your available schedule, it does little to help you stay focused on your writings. I can say this from my own experience; we writers are the experts of inventing justifiable excuses to stop us from writing that next sentence.
The main character is about slaughter the evil dragon? Better do some laundry!
The romantic interest finally confessed to the heroine? I have to feed my dog!
Just starting out on your 3 hours writing sessions, scavenged from your precious free time? Perfect timing to order some pizza!
Writing is tough. But while we can disregard most of those excuses with sheer willpower, going on a long and productive writing session is not an excuse to treat your body poorly. If anything, we should take extra care of our health in order to make sure we don’t fall ill in the middle of our projects.
Hunger, in particular, is one of the biggest enemy of productivity. I personally have wasted so many hours of my writing sessions fiddling with pasta and instant noodles instead of thinking of the next sentence to write.
This is excluding the fact that cleaning the tablewares afterwards could potentially become a very exciting activity compared to writing.
Now, although I still leave my work station to grab some food every now and then, I do find that keeping some
not-so healthy snacks on your desk lowers the chance of you neglecting your project for some takeouts.
So, without further ado, here are some of my favorite snacks, in no particular order:
1. Snacks to reward myself
I love chocolate. (As you might have noticed from my “About Me” section).
Now don’t get me wrong, I fully understand that placing a huge chocolate bar by your desk could get very messy.
Not to mention that it is about the farthest thing from healthy ever. But whenever I arrange my snack station by my desk, I always try to include a small portion of chocolate, just to get me motivated.
This could be two-sticks of Kit-Kat, a small bar of Silver Queen or Toblerone, or even a small handful of chocolate chips. I try my best to save them for when I finish my writing sessions, because otherwise, I would devour them first and then forget all about my project.
2. Snacks to help me think
This is my go-to snack whenever I need to take a breather from my project. It’s easy to get lost in thoughts while munching on my favorite granola bar or reaching the bottom of my granola bag for that last piece of grains that always stuck to the bottom of the container stubbornly.
I don’t know if it’s because I have to chew more when I’m eating this, but I prefer to eat granola when I need to do some thinking for the project. While chocolate serves as the best reward for finishing the writing session, granola is more like a fuel to my brain. It has some sweetness to it without being too decadent, and it has enough texture that I find therapeutic to chew on while I’m lost in thoughts.
3. Snacks to keep me from getting hungry
This is something that I discovered not too long ago.
I had always been skeptical about these chips. I was the type of person who thought I’d rather eat whole fruits than to nibble on their chips counterpart. But when I was away on my writing retreat the other day, I decided to try a bag of mixed fruits chips, and I was blown away.
I mean, nothing really beats eating fresh fruits, but the convenience of having them in a dry form was phenomenal. I am fully aware that I might sound stupid for saying this, but even though it is supposed to be obvious, I didn’t realize just how much easier it is to eat dry fruits chips than to peel and slice them myself—at least until I gave them a try.
I recently took a liking to spinach chips as well. The one I tried was on the saltier side, but I liked it either way. I know that it might not be as healthy as eating them fresh, but I’d like to think of them as a healthier alternatives to potato chips. (I cannot guarantee the validity of this assumption.)
On that note, do let me know if you have your favorite brand of fruits / veggies chips that you like! I’d love to give them a try.
And that’s about it!
I really don’t need much in order to get myself writing. Give me a really interesting scene to write, and I might even forget I have any writing rituals or snacks to accompany me. These snacks are just there, lying around for whenever I need them, along with a huge jug of water on my desk.
What about you guys? Do you have your own favorite snacks to eat when you’re on a writing session? Or are you guys more comfortable with keeping your desks clean and free from F&B (for potential spillage)? Let me know in the comments below, because I am very interested in learning how different writers deal with long writing sessions.
Also let me know if you have some recommendations for snacks, because I’d love to try them out! I currently reside in Indonesia, so getting ahold of international snacks might not be easy, but I’d love to hear about them nonetheless!
As a final note, I’d like to remind that no matter what the circumstances are, overeating these snacks will not only be harmful to your projects, but also to your health. Please be mindful to keep yourself from eating too much by portioning out the snacks before you start writing.
Stay inspired, everyone!
I will be posting new content every Saturdays, be it writerly stuff, or just things that I like to write about. This includes my own stories, information about my books, and things that interest me. Keep yourself updated by following me on Twitter and Instagram.
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