#authortoolboxbloghop, For Writers

#AuthorToolboxBlogHop – Making Time for Writing

Making Time For Writing

I know sometimes making time for writing can be a struggle. Recently, it’s been a bit of a struggle for me. In the last couple of months, illness, my day job, and family responsibilities have crowded in, and I’ve hard to work harder to make time for my writing. So I thought for this bloghop, I’d share some of the techniques I use to fit my writing time in.

1. Schedule your writing time on your calendar.ย This is especially important if, like me, you can’t keep the same schedule for each day. Some days my writing time is early in the day, and sometimes it’s in the evening.

2. Set realistic time goals. Sometimes we have a habit of overloading our schedules, and this is true for our writing as well. Some days, writing time might have to be a bit shorter due to all the other responsibilities you have to fulfill that day. For instance, if you have doctor appointments during the day, your daughter’s ballet recital in the evening, andย  all your normal responsibilities, you may have to make your writing time shorter. On other days, where you have extra free time, you can make your writing time longer. I find it usually balances out in the end.

3. Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize. Ask yourself, “What things must get done today?” This helps you identify how much time you can set aside for writing. This also applies to your writing. What projects are the most important and need your attention now?

4. Be prepared for the unexpected. Sometimes unexpected things happen: illness, accidents, death in the family. While you can’t really plan for such an event, you can be prepared. First, in your mindset – when something like this happens, realize you might have to take a step back from your writing. This doesn’t mean you’re quitting, it just means there are some other things you have to deal with first.

Second, don’t lock yourself into a tight deadline. In other words, plan more than enough time to complete your projects. For instance, if you know a certain project typically takes you three weeks to complete, give yourself four. This way if something happens to knock off your regular writing time, you have a little time to take off.

5. Take time for yourself. Sometimes you might need to take some time to recharge yourself. I know some people hold to the “write every day” principle, but I find that after a grueling project it helps to take a little time off. This gives you time to reflect on what you want to do next, helps you prepare for the next project (i.e. brainstorming), and lets you focus on self care which allows you to be at your best for the next project. Journaling is a good way to still get some writing in during this time.

These techniques help keep me on track, and I hope you’ll find them helpful too. Also, keep in mind that everyone has bad days, and everyone fails at times. The important thing is to keep at it.

Nano Blog and Social Media Hop2

This post is part of the #authortoolboxbloghop. It’s hosted by Raimey Gallant. For more details and to join in the fun, goย here.

How about you? What techniques do you find most helpful in making time for your writing? Let me know in the comments!

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14 thoughts on “#AuthorToolboxBlogHop – Making Time for Writing”

  1. I admire those with busy schedules and commitments who find time to pursue their writing aspirations. I tend to write when normal people sleep. It’s not good for your health but scheduling that time is easy.

  2. I’m sorry to hear the last couple months haven’t been stellar. I hope you are feeling better and that things are improving. Great advice on keeping up with writing. It can be hard to prioritize your writing time and time for yourself, but finding a healthy balance that keeps you sane is what we all strive for.

  3. Great post, Charity! I think I need these reminders monthly, because I forget, and then the expectations are unrealistic again, the priorities insurmountable, etc. Will schedule this for a Facebook post soon!

  4. Scheduling is so important. It’s often easy to say “today I have to do X, and Y, and Z”, but when next week rolls around you look back and realize there was always “something else” that needed doing.
    I’m also a firm believer in “one at a time”. I often like to “imagine” all the things I “will” accomplish today, but there’s always one “active task” at any given moment, and sometimes it helps to ask “would it have been better if I had ‘only’ accomplished one of the others?” As long as the answer is no, the best choice was made.
    There’s that way in which we can choose to put in the time, but we can’t control what comes back to us in return.
    Taking time for myself is definitely a tricky thing. There’s always the temptation to “have more fun”, and in turn there’s always that part of me that wonders “what if I’d pushed just a little harder?”
    Balance can be very elusive, but eventually, if only through trial and error, we all find our way.
    Thank you for sharing.

  5. Great tips. To find time to write, I made sure my friends and family understood I needed time and why I needed the time. It helps tremendously to have a people around cheering for your success when they get the importance of the task.

  6. One tip I have is to have some “easy” writing goals as well as harder goals. Blog posts are a good example. Writing a fresh and interesting post is easier if you have a topic in mind.

    For example, post a weekly “Bookish Question” with a friend. We agreed the 2018 questions in November 2017, so when I need to write but lack inspiration, I know that’s time to pull out the list of questions and binge-write three or four posts. The act of writing something “easy” is often enough to push me to keep writing, to move onto something harder.

    That also means that when #3 hits, I’ve got the posts written, and just need to load and schedule them.

  7. Oh my, it is a struggle lately, isnโ€™t it? I have a hard time keeping up with the kids, the sunshine and wanting to fit it all in. But yes, I do get up very early and take advantage of every quiet moment that I can. Happy Hop Day!

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