“Create Time for What You Love” by Joan Y. Edwards
It’s hard to juggle work and family schedules to do the things you love. I love writing and illustrating. Perhaps you do, too. It could be you love skiing and don’t get enough time to do that. Whatever it is that you want to have time for, you can change the ideas below to work for you. However, I’m focusing today on time to write or illustrate.
It seems like you have to be a scientist or magician to create time to write and illustrate. Author, Robin K. Moore said, “For those of us not writing full time, there is always the struggle of making time to work on our craft.” She asked for tips on how to get time to write. Illustrators have this same problem. You may find it difficult to find the time to do activities you love with your busy schedules with work and family. So I did a little brainstorming to find a few ideas that might help writers, illustrators, and anyone who struggles to find time for important projects. To simplify I’ll use writing, but you can insert the activity or project of your choice.
Set aside a certain amount of time to write each day: 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 1 hour, 2 hours, 3 hours.
This doesn’t include time spent in research, learning new skills, and marketing. Set aside different time slots for them.
How much per week do successful writers devote to writing? Researching? Marketing? Learning new skills? Every project takes different amounts of time. Non-fiction and historical fiction demand more research. Some writers need more study with skills; others with revision.
Depending upon your present life commitments and responsibilities, you may find time as nonexistent. You have to discover it, uncover it, rip it out, or whatever devious means you need to create the time you need. Here’s what I’ve heard other writers do:
Get up 30 minutes to an hour earlier in the morning.
When your children are reading, write.
When the family is watching television, use an iPad or laptop and write while you’re with them. It takes concentration, but you can do parts of your writing: brainstorming, revisions.
Use software similar to Dragon Dictation that will not only record your words, but write them down for you. You can record while cooking supper, washing dishes, sorting laundry, etc.
Ask your spouse to give you this free time as a gift for your birthday, or special occasion.
Get together with a group of writer friends and spend time writing. If you want a critique, add an hour to the time together so you have one hour to write and another hour to critique.
Take your children to the library. Ask a librarian to help them find books. Write while she’s helping them.
If you’re eating out, use your phone to write yourself an email with your writing ideas for a chapter, character, or scene.
Hire a babysitter to watch the children while you write. If a friend has children, too, swap time so that you entertain the children one week for 2 hours and you entertain them the next week. Thus both of you get time to write.
Say “There’s time for me to write.” Then look for time and ask for time and you’ll find it.
Good luck! You, the readers, are an indispensable part of my blog. Thank you. If there’s a topic you’d like for me to feature in a blog post, let me know. Feel free to share this post.
How do you find time to write, illustrate, or do fun things?
How much time do you spend a day or week on writing or illustrating?
Do you write part-time or full-time?
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