Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Do You Have Time To Write?

In a perfect world, a writer would have many hours every day to pound the keyboard and produce story after story. Maybe those  full-time, paid writers who work for newspapers or high-end magazines do that, but those of us who are part-time freelancers don't often have that option.

We constantly find detours in the road as Life keeps putting obstacles in the way. Mundane household tasks need to be done, like it or not. Social obligations must be fulfilled--if you're a social person like I am. Unexpected circumstances arrive in the form of a surprise guest, or a sudden illness or death in your family or network of close friends. All of these things diminish our writing time.

Human beings are also experts in wasting time. Don't shake your head--we all do it. A little bit of it is fine, but when it happens more and more often, it's time to take a good look at how you operate.

So, how do you 'make' time to write? Some writers set a specific time frame in each day as writing time. Maybe 7 to 10 every morning. Or 9 to 11 every night. If it works for you, go for it. I can't seem to operate that way. I've found that some days I have very little time to write, but I try to do at least a few minutes worth. When my day is relatively free of other obligations, I hit it hard. I've learned that if I want writing time, I have to give up something else. For me, that's been evening TV. I rarely ever watch it anymore. I've also had to cut my reading time, and I miss that far more than TV. I readily admit that my housekeeping is not as good as it once was. I get it done, but it might not be as thorough. Since neither of us has contacted a dread disease because of it, I don't worry about it.

Making time to write has no set rules. Every writer has to make her own conditions and do what works best for her. If getting up an hour before everyone else in the house works for you, go for it. As for me--I treasure that extra hour in bed in the early morning. Step back and take a good look at your life. You can find some writing time if the desire to write is strong enough.

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