I’m married with two little girls who love to demand my attention. Sometimes I feel like I have three kids
(we have a cat who’s equally demanding for attention. I’ve never met a cat so demanding. You thought I meant something else didn’t you? Maybe I did…lol)
IF you feel like you never have enough time to sit and work on your writing projects, here are a few tips that might help.
Carry a notebook
If you’re like me, anytime you even think about touching the computer keyboard, your kids or other family members demand your attention as if they can sense that you want to write. Or your kids will suddenly become so bored, as if they weren’t bored 5 minutes before you decided to try and write. Carrying a notebook around will give you the opportunity to write down ideas so you don’t forget. I use it to capture quotes, funny sayings, things I would use for social media. I also use it to design blog posts. But many writes I know use notebooks to sketch out first drafts.
Speaking of first drafts
Make an outline
Right now, because I still work a day job and have to wake up early, I really only have 2 hours to write in the evening, and that’s not including spending time with my husband once the kids go to sleep, so it’s not that long. (I do have a lot more time on the weekends). Lately, I’ve been creating outlines for my WIPs. When I have an outline, i can then write scene by scene. I might sit down and begin writing one scene, and it turns into something completely different than I envisioned. But because I’ve jotted down my thoughts in scene form, (usually paragraph format) it’s easier for me to start, and it’s easier for me to stop writing. It’s one way to stay organized.
Speaking of staying organized…
Make writing goals for the day / week / month
When you write out your goals, it will help you skip the process of hmming and mentally pacing. Even if you’re like me and you have 7 works in progress, sometimes having too much is just as bad as having no idea where to start. Make a list of everything you want to accomplish that day, or that week, (I’ve been doing it per month and then breaking it down) and then begin to chip off each writing goal one by one. Even if only an hour at a time.
Yes, yes, I hear you. “I don’t have time,” I have felt the same way so many times. I’ve told other authors how I feel. One author friend says she will wake up at 4am and write for two hours in the mornings. Another author friend told me, her ‘author hours’ are 10pm to 2am. It can be done, if you want to badly enough. You can schedule maybe 2 or 3 days a week where you make time to write. You can schedule time on the weekends where you make time to write.
But you might say, “I don’t feel inspired to write if I have to schedule time out to do so,” Ah, but that’s where all the other advice comes into play. Carrying around a notebook will help you jot down all those inspirational thoughts. Making an outline and creating writing goals will help you organize all the inspiration.
These are thoughts from my own experiences. Do you have any other advice, writing friends? What do you do when your schedule becomes too full?