What It Feels Like to Be in the Zone with Lisa Tener

My interview of author coach Lisa Tener was perhaps the most unusual webinar I’ve ever been a part of. But to find out why, keep reading!

Lisa started us off with explaining what it feels like to “be in the zone” when writing: “You have this sense that you can be there forever. You have a heightened sense of flow. It feels inspired. You feel like you captured something.” Yes!

When you sit to write, be mindful that you're entering sacred spaceClick To Tweet

Here are her steps for getting in the zone, for which she uses the acronym WRITE:

  1. Wipe your mind clear. (Enter the gate.) Be mindful that you’re creating sacred space. Either at your desk or in nature. Whatever gets you to clear your mind will work.
  1. Read your intention and goals aloud. What is my intention and vision for what this book will do? Be clear about what your intention is for the day.
  1. Invite your muse. Be clear. Connect with that part of you that has the deeper knowing: your creative source. A walk can be a wonderful way to do that.
  1. Tune in and write.
  1. Enjoy the gratitude. Whether you sat and thought about your characters or readers, even if you didn’t write, that’s okay. Feed that relationship with your muse. If you’re critical, that doesn’t feed the relationship with your muse.

What does a muse look like I asked Lisa? “Some people see their muse as an animal: an eagle, a dragon,” Lisa said. Others see their muse as a person and she had a client who saw it as the ocean while another saw her muse as a court jester.

How can you stay in the zone once you’re there?

Lisa says that most of the time time when you start writing you stay there. If it stops, that’s the time to walk, do QiGong, or dance. Then come back and see what you get after that. Also, write and don’t try to edit. Once you get in the editing mind you’re in a different space. If you feel stuck, it might be time to take a break. Sometimes you get a sense of your own rhythm.

Then Lisa led everyone in a visualization exercise. Try it as you listen to her during this video. And keep listening to the video to find out what special gift I received during the visualization.

How do we find a voice in our writing? Lisa likes her clients to picture their reader. Imagine the reader before the book and after the book, whether it’s someone you know or someone you made up. Have a solid outline and read it out loud. Basically, write with your reader in mind.

Write with your reader in mind Click To Tweet

Our job as writers is to let the ego out of the way. We want to bring in all the things we know about … the intellect shouldn’t be driving everything.

She shared productivity tips for getting your writing done, such as write the easiest parts first and fill in the harder parts later.

Hear Lisa Tener’s additional tips when you listen to the video.

Frances CaballoThe author of this blog: Frances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including the 2nd edition of Social Media Just for WritersThe Author’s Guide to Goodreads, and Social Media in 30 Minutes a Day. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for my free email course.

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