At this time of the year it feels very appropriate to discuss finding the time to write, especially given this is the first thing I am writing in about three days!
As the nights draw in and Christmas creeps ever closer it is very easy to let your schedule slip and allow writing to take a back seat. We all want to see our friends and families, we want to go out to parties and drinks or snuggle up and watch festive movies. With all of this going on and the sad fact that many of us still have full time jobs to contend with on top of our writing which we cannot put to one side, writing is usually what we let slip. Assuming you agree with what I have written so far, I shall keep this post suitably short. Without further ado, please find my top tips for still writing when things get busy.
1) cut,cut,cut! What I am about to say might sound harsh to some but this is all about priorities. Do you have other hobbies you like to do? Maybe you knit, sketch or crochet and if you do December is not the time to do it. PRIORITIES, remember guys? Unless you aspire to make a living from these hobbies and not from writing the busiest time of the year is the time to drop them. Come back to your scarf or next painting in January when you have more free time, for now every spare minute you can muster should be dedicated to your writing. Let’s face it, if writing wasn’t important to you, you wouldn’t be on this blog so just do it.
2) Turn off that TV! Ok, ok I know I said you might want to watch festive movies but seriously….how many times have you watched that old family favourite? So many people make the excuse they ‘don’t have time’ in regards to many things, it may be writing or working out or anything inbetween. Then if you ask that person to write down exactly what they do for a week, hour by hour honestly, you will likely see at least a few hours (and that is being very kind) sat watching TV. How much of your current project could you get done in a few hours? I generally write for 1-3 hours a day and in that time I can hammer out around 10-15K words a week, a few hours go a long way.
3) Get up earlier….maybe? For me this one is a last resort, I will go right out and say I do not do this. I get up at 6AM for work everyday and that is quite early enough thank you very much. That being said I know some people who really do have very busy lives and the only time they have spare is 4 or 5AM until they go off to work at 7 or 8AM. It may seem difficult and I would certainly say it does but think about this fact for a moment. If you finish work at 5PM you then have a world of things you could be doing. You might go to the gym, to the pub with friends, dreaded christmas shopping or even just making dinner. If you wake up at 5AM and you usually get up at 6AM you only have one alternative to writing at that time, sleep. You have addedd a whole hour to your day as if by magic, think how productive we could all be with an extra hour in every day.
Well I think I will leave it there, I could go on and drag this to five but I think three is enough….don’t you? December is hard, it really is but if you prioritise and remember how important your craft is to you, then you will get the work done that you need to get done.
Until next time my friends.