There’s an emerging movement in favour of ‘slow productivity’.

And writing is one of the best examples of the many benefits of hurrying slowly.

Successful writing doesn’t result from Herculean efforts to tally up mammoth word-counts, often at the last minute (although, if that’s your chosen path, good luck). The best and most sustainable writing takes place slowly and methodically. This is so despite the many voices telling you how you can ‘write a book in a month’, ‘write a book in a week’, or even ‘write a book in a day’. You can only do this if you write a lot, but without haste.

What works is to write slowly and consistently, so that the writing accumulates over time into larger and ever more meaningful pieces.

The English author of the Victorian age, Anthony Trollope, epitomised a slow but steady approach to writing. He produced a very significant output, including 47 novels, and is best known for a long series of novels centred upon the fictional county of Barsetshire. Yet he claimed never to write for more than three hours a day. In fact, while becoming one of the period’s most popular novelists, he maintained a full-time job with the Post Office. Because he had a workable method, he didn’t need more time.

And without developing a writing method that works, no amount of extra time will ever be enough.