Making Time to Write

Sometimes the toughest thing with being a writer is actually finding the time to write.  This post is case in point.  The only time I actually had any time to do any writing was at the cusp of a new day.

So what the heck is the answer?  The biggest piece of the answer (because there certainly isn’t one definitive one) is to make your writing a priority.  Just like you would do for exercising, spending time with your family or going out for that quiet time that you so desperately need.

So how do I tackle this problem (because with two children and a full-time job, it most certainly is a problem)?  The only answer I can give you is I use various methods.  Sometimes (when life is less hectic), I can easily set aside an hour a night (or morning).  Other times, I need to grab 15 minutes here and 15 minutes there. 

You would be simply amazed at how much you can achieve with 15 minutes of focused effort (the key here is the word focused) a couple times a day.  In fact, one week, I managed to finish two complete chapters using this method.

Lastly, sometimes you just need to take it with you.  That could be a notepad or notebook or it could be your laptop.  I’m lucky that my wife likes to drive.  Those long trips are ideal to get down and dirty with your story.

I’d be lying if I said that I’m always able to write every day (or more accurately, every week).  There are those times when you can’t help but let your writing sit.  Life is simply too busy for it to be otherwise.

However, if you know that you’ll be faced with a forced break, make sure that your story is somewhere that you can’t ignore it.  I know, the last time I was forced to leave the writing for a time, I had the manuscript in my briefcase.  I couldn’t go to work without knowing it was there.  Eventually, the story forced me to come back and resume writing.

In any case, the message here is not to follow any one plan to keep the words flowing.  Whether you use a schedule, or just pick and chose time as available, it doesn’t really matter.  The thing to consider is ‘Where does my writing fit in my life?’.  Is it the most important thing, or just something I like to do when I have a moment.

Only you can make that judgement, but once you have made the decision, you must make the effort fit the priority.  It might mean a writing holiday, or just an enjoyable hobby, but you are the one who will make it happen.

Good luck with your decision and happy writing.



One comment

  1. This is definitely a challenge for me. NaNoWriMo taught me I can do it, even using 10 minutes here and 15 minutes there to get to the 1,666 word count mark at the end of the day. The best was when I had like 4 hours and got over 6K words down, that was nice. But the small chunks do add up, I need to try and get back in the habit of writing once a day, even if it’s for 10 minutes, that’s more words of my story written. Thanks for the post Mike!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.