“Bookending” on Twitter Can Keep You Accountable

courtesy of BL1961

By Jennifer Blanchard

Yesterday, I read the article Bookending: Using Twitter to Beat Procrastination and Boost Your Writing, by Marla Beck. It really grabbed my attention. It talked about an accountability method called “bookending.”

So what is bookending?

“[It’s] the simple process of alerting a supportive friend when you begin and when you stop working on a project,” Beck says. “This technique provides us with structure, a witness to our process and support.”

Here’s how it works:

  • When you’re ready to work on a project, you tweet to your friend “I’m writing now” (or whatever you want to say).
  • During the time you’re working, if you decide to take a break, you tweet your friend to inform him/her.  (“I’m taking a break to make dinner.”) Tweet again when you’re back.
  • After you’re finished working on your project, you tweet again to your friend and tell him/her that you’re finished for the session, and then give an update on what you accomplished and what you’re working on for tomorrow.

Using a process like this goes a long way toward being accountable for your writing.

And if you don’t have a specific friend you can be accountable to, why not be accountable to all your Twitter followers? Post updates on there so people can keep track of what you’re working on.  

Beck says bookending on Twitter also has another big advantage.

“Twitter archives your ‘tweets,’ creating a tangible archive of your bookending statements,” she says. “Reviewing a list of your bookends over time provides you with a powerful record of your progress towards your writing goals.”

To read the rest of Beck’s article, visit her blog, The Relaxed Writer.

I think I’m going to give bookending a try. How about you?

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