How to write your book with just 20 minutes a day

Who has time to write? Well, you have more time to write than you think and even if you don’t think you have time to write, I bet you have 20 minutes a day, don’t you? When I was writing my first book, I was busy just like you. My two kids were both in a demanding high school, playing varsity sports, and applying to college. I had to make sure I had dinners prepared, and found time to do laundry, grocery shop, clean the house, and exercise.  Finding any time to write seemed impossible.  But I was able to find time to write my first book with the techniques I am gonna share with you here.

Tip #1 Set aside time in the morning to write before the demands of the day keep you from writing. If you get up just 20 minutes earlier you would not sacrifice the other things, just a couple of snoozes on the old alarm.  I know what you might be saying, “I am not a morning person”. Well neither was I. Still, there really isn’t much difference between getting up at 6:20 AM and 6:40 AM.

Tip #2 Find a place where you won’t be interrupted. If others are around tell them of your plan, that you just need 20 minutes of uninterrupted time. Try to write in a place where you normally don’t do other work if that might distract you.

Tip #3 Set a timer for 20 minutes and write fast and furious. Don’t edit or “think”, just write. Have a plan for your writing so you aren’t staring at a blank screen and maximize your time. Don’t just wing it, have an outline to follow. When the timer goes off you are done for the day.

Tip #4 Use the Pomodoro technique. This technique is a time management method where you break down your work into intervals of time, usually 25 minutes in length, with breaks in between. Use the Pomodoro technique for your 20-minute writing sessions and take a 5-minute break in between each session. This can help keep you focused and energized during your writing.

Tip #5 Turn off your notifications. This means no emails, social media, or messages during your 20-minute writing time. You can turn them back on after your writing session is done. You’ll be amazed at how much more productive you are when you’re not constantly being interrupted by notifications.

Tip #6 Reward yourself after each session. This can be something small like a piece of candy or a walk outside, or something bigger like a nice dinner with your family. Celebrating your progress will keep you motivated to write more.

I can write between 400-700 words in 20 minutes. I was able to write faster and faster each time I wrote.  If you wrote just 20 minutes a day at maybe 400 words that would make 36,000 words or the size of an average nonfiction book in just 90 days.  You actually have more time than you think. By starting your morning routine with writing you won’t let other things distract you. If you have a routine, and a place to write you will be successful. So, your next step is to time yourself and write for 20 minutes of uninterrupted time in the morning for a week and see how much you can write. I think you will be surprised by the amount of progress you can make.

In conclusion, if you want to write a book, but don’t think you have the time, you do. All it takes is 20 minutes a day to start making progress. By setting aside time in the morning, finding a place where you won’t be interrupted, using the Pomodoro technique, turning off notifications, and rewarding yourself, you’ll be able to write your book and achieve your goals. Start today and see what you can accomplish in just 20 minutes a day!




Picture of Azul Terronez

Azul Terronez

Azul Terronez is a bestselling author, speaker and book coach who has helped hundreds of authors write and publish their books. He is the go-to book coach to influential figures such as Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income and Jadah Sellner, co-founder of Simple Green Smoothies.

After 24 years of contemplation, a student's question finally sparked Terronez's passion for writing and he set a bold goal to write his first book in 30 days. This led to the publication of "The Art of Apprenticeship", which garnered the attention of a TEDx organizer and led to a TEDx talk with over 3.1 million views.

Terronez has since become a sought-after speaker and has been recognized as a Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author. He is dedicated to helping other leaders write and publish their books, opening up new opportunities for them, just as it did for him.