So how did the holidays treat you this year? I won't ask if you “got what you wanted” because we all know that isn't what it's all about. Regardless of your beliefs, the holidays build your momentum toward that big day. And whether that day for you means having family members in from out of town, attending parties, giving gifts, serving a meal, or attending religious services (or some combination of these activities), you usually find yourself spent for the next few days afterward.

So for many people, the day after Christmas (Boxing Day in some places) is another day off, a time to clean up after the celebrations and possibly take advantage of those after-Christmas sales. If you have children, they are still home and enjoying their gifts. But for writers, the time off seems like an opportunity to get some writing done. However, the holidays offer a flurry of distractions in the weeks leading up to Christmas, and the “morning after” tends to leave people exhausted with their minds still distracted. 

Personally, I will admit that I had trouble getting motivated this morning for the following reasons: 

1. Family and friends are still calling with holiday and New Year's well wishes.

2. My husband is off work this week and has been popping in and out of the office, occasionally talking to me, and other times talking on the phone.

3. Sleeping later than usual after a long day yesterday has left my mind in weekend distraction mode, and I'm having some trouble shaking it.

Luckily, I didn't drink last night (that was Friday night), so at least I'm not recovering from a hangover as well. 

So what is a writer to do? You want to pull your mind out of that post-holiday funk, but the motivation just isn't there. While everyone has their own way of getting back into their routine, here are a few prompts that might help:

1.  Put your holiday in writing. If you keep a personal journal, use it to record your reflections about the holiday season, what about it you enjoyed, what you will do differently next year, etc. Even if you don't keep a journal, write about your holiday anyway. This will put you back in the writing state of mind.

2.  Compare your holiday schedule with your normal routine. This follows on the heels of the previous one. Write a detailed comparison (in your journal or elsewhere) of your routine and how it changes between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. What could you do to preserve your usual routine? What about the disruptions do you enjoy? Once again, this can be brief. It is just meant to get the words flowing again.

3.  How would your character spend the holidays? This one targets fiction writers and is a fun way to get your creative juices flowing. You probably wouldn't put this in a novel, but it would definitely get you writing. Describe your main character either preparing for, celebrating, or cleaning up after a major holiday. Even if you aren't a fiction writer, you most likely have a favorite novel. How would that character celebrate the holidays? Unleash your inner novelist.

So what about you? How do you battle that post-holiday block and start writing again?