Writing Tips at GarySpeer.com

Tips for writers and musing about writing and life

Insomnia? Might as well use the time for your writing


Last night was very restless for me. It seems the older I get, the less I can sleep soundly at nights. (We won’t even get into some of the standard aging and Old Guys reasons comedians seem to find so funny. It’s not.)

What I’ve learned over the years is that a sleepless or restless night can be an opportunity. If done wisely, and not done too often, some of my sleepless nights turn into an opportunity to use the time for writing, for planning my writing, and sometimes just for general musing about where I want my writing career to go.

Of course, medical advice about insomnia probably flies in the face of that suggestion. Certainly health professionals would lean toward doing something that quiets your mind, not something that activates the old creative juices, causing you to become more alert and less likely to sleep.

But certainly, if you are having trouble sleeping, getting up to scribble a few notes or pound around on your keyboard a bit is an alternative you might consider. Of course, if you use a sleep aid or perhaps some kinds of sleeping pills, getting those creative juices to flow might be an insurmountable challenge for you. In which case, I might recommend a small glass of warm milk and crawling back under the sheets.

Otherwise, do yourself and your writing a favor. On those nights when sleep simply will not come, or will not return, pull out the laptop/netbook, sit down at your desk/writing table, and see what happens.