Thursday, September 13, 2018

The Chunky Method ~ By Allie Pleiter

I was fortunate to meet Allie Pleiter at the #RWA2018 Conference in Denver this summer.  I've read her book and I use her method. Frankly, and I'm not overstating this, the Chunky Method changed my writing flow.

I'll share my consistent "chunk" in the comments :)

Discover Your “Chunk” To Get That Book Done

Hi, L.A. Thanks for inviting me to share my book and method on your blog. 

These days publishing has become as much about productivity as about product. Writers are expected to produce books faster than ever, while also handling a multitude of marketing (if not independent publishing) tasks.  How do you get those words out of your head to become the books you want to share with the world?

Here’s a powerful system for tackling this issue:  The Chunky Method.

What is your Chunk?
Your “Chunk” is simply how many words you write in a single sitting before you run out of creative energy. Most of us have a consistent chunk, and that can be the basis of some very effective planning.  Once you give yourself a few experimental sessions and average the output, you’ll know your Chunk—and that’s half the data you need.
Are you a Big Chunk writer or a Small Chunk writer?
This distinction is the other half of the information you need.  Based on my experience, if your chunk is 1000 words or greater, you are probably a Big Chunk writer.  If it is less than that, you are likely a Small Chunk writer.  Their needs are different.

Big Chunk writers, who must totally immerse themselves in the words to make progress, need:
       -a dedicated space to work. Banging out your passages at the dining room table annoys you.
       - a specific environment. You require silence or a certain kind of music around you when you write. A shared, messy, or a make-do office won’t do.
       - an extended period in which to write. You need a big block of time to find your rhythm. It’s frustrating to find a large enough span of time to write every day.
       - proper ergonomics. Long sessions mean you need a chair, desk, keyboard, mouse, monitor and lighting that helps your body rather than hurts it.

Small Chunk writers tend to be more adaptable…but prone to distraction. They take life, work, and writing in smaller bites and often juggle multiple projects. You can:
       - write anytime, anywhere. Coffee bars, park benches, libraries, airplanes—any setting works for you.
       - easily tune out distractions. You don’t need pleasing music (or silence)—you can tune out and crawl inside a project anywhere.
       - write often. Small spurts fit your writing into a busy life. A daily word count works for you, but cramming for a deadline probably won’t.
       - use any tools. Tablets, notepads, laptops, even index cards or cell phones —ergonomics don’t make much difference, so you’ve got lots of possibilities.

       Big Chunk Writers aren’t better or more committed than Small Chunk writers, they’re just different.  But both need a plan that takes their styles into account, one chunk at a time. After all, you don’t have to write the whole thing right now, just the next chunk of it. You’ll be amazed at how empowering this smaller goal can be.

Calculate how many chunks it takes you to reach your desired word count, then plot them out on a calendar to reach your desired deadline. Any spreadsheet or even a simple calculator can help you plan, but if you’d like help formulating your Chunk and the path to a completed project, I’ve created a free Chunky Calculator you can download.  Simply text CHUNKY to 22828 or click here [link listed below].  You’ll be on your way to greater productivity and a sound plan in no time.

Buy Link: 

Bestselling author Allie Pleiter has written over 30 novels and non-fiction works, selling over 1.2 million books worldwide.  Aside from teaching her popular Chunky Method of time management for writers, Allie works on as many as four books at a time.  How? By fitting small “chunks” of writing into a busy life—accompanied by coffee, knitting, and lemon meringue pie.

She is the author of The Chunky Method Handbook: Your Step-by-Step Plan to WRITE THAT BOOK Even When Life Gets in the Way. Visit her website for more information.

Find Allie:


  1. Thanks for having me visit, Leslie. I especially love coaching indie writers because finding a path to dependable productivity has such a big impact on their careers. Every writer is different--and deserves to be.

  2. Allie, it was a joy to meet you at #RWA2018. My chunk is 450 and I’m a small chunk writer. I can write longer if I’m in the groove, but normally 450 words is it. And I can achieve this several times a day.
    ~Hugs and thanks for being here today,

  3. This was really informative. Thank you Allie and LA. I think I'm going to measure my "chunk," but I have the feeling that I'm a big chunker. Oh, that sounds a bit audacious. Cheers

    1. Marilyn, let us know what you find out. It'll be interesting. I was thinking I was a big chunker :) and surprised when I found out I wasn't. It's amazing how much better I felt when I realized why I needed to stop. I was done for that word count/chunk!!
      Hugs, L.A.

  4. Allie -- After hearing both L.A. and Audra Harders rave about your chunky method, I was delighted to read your post. I particularly liked your characterization of writers as big or small chunkers. Thanks for an extremely valuable post.

    1. So Amanda, curious minds want to know, do you think you're a big or small chunker. I have my guess :)

    2. It does offer some eye-opening insights for many writers—and can inform how you plan to get your writing done.

  5. Thanks, Allie, for the chunky method!! This is the best and most-fun method I've heard yet to keeping one on track with their writing goals. I'm headed out to take my measurement, but I have a feeling I'm a lot like Leslie Ann--one who, on average, writes in small chunks a couple or more times a day!

    1. Lisa, it's really fun to keep a record. Get Allie's book b/c she has more than "chunks" method in there, although that's what I use the most. I can't wait to hear what your record says. Let us know.

    2. Yes, taking stock of your writing style can tell you a great deal—but we rarely think to do it. I hope you learn useful things about how your muse operates.

    3. Got your "Chunky Method" book, Allie! I need all the help I can get. Thanks, Leslie Ann, for hosting Allie and leading me to her and her method. I can't wait to get started reading all about it and employing the principles.

  6. Allie, good to see you on Leslie's blog! It was so good to share time with you at RWA and discover all the projects you've been busy with.

    I'm a small chunk writer, but I write a string of small chunks at once. About 250 words is my sprint, then I have to get up and take the dog out or do laundry, or something that's a minimal distraction before I can sit down and write another 250 word chunk. When I get in the groove, I can do that for 5 or 6 chunks a day.

    Now I need to strive for consistency, LOL.

    Allie, I'm so glad you shared this method of writing with the world. I'm doing my best to help pass it on!!

    Hope to see you again, soon.

    1. Audra, thank you for introducing me to Allie at #RWA2018. I loved her method (thank you for introducing Chunky to me a year ago!) and I loved meeting her! We’ll see her again in Oct!!
      ~Hugs, L.A.

    2. Delighted to meet you, too! Nothing excites me more than sharing the Chunky Method!