Time management is key. I do write 12 hours or so per day, but most of it is emails and analysis related to my other job. However, I do contribute a few hours or so a day to this stuff — much of which is just in my “idea bin” for later development.
Your idea of slices is surely the way to go. The problem is ensuring that your mind is able to be completely focused during each slice. The creep of other thoughts and other projects is pervasive and damning. It robs you of the ability to effectively use each time slice.
Reaching inbox zero, and ensuring I adhere to it as much as possible is key for me. The inbox(es) has/have been a huge distractor for me. I was always afraid that something in there required action, but since I never made tasks for myself based on them (I just kept them in the inbox), I could never be sure. Getting them processed and out of the inbox keeps me sure of that.
I’m now able to focus better. Less jumping around from tab to tab, less checking emails outside of scheduled time. It’s bee great. Priorities have fallen in line.
The drawback: I haven’t been able to read and recommend on Medium as much. I haven’t prioritized it. I’m okay with that for a little bit, but I want to be part of the community, as well.