Resources for Writers
Finding the Time: Really Useful Links by Paul Anthony Shortt
Easily the most common question I’m asked about my writing is “How do you find the time?” To put this into context, I have a day job Monday to Friday, three children all under the age of four, and my wife is a wheelchair-user, so there are certain household tasks that it’s easier (or only possible) for me to do. From 7:30am to 8pm at night, I am BUSY. It doesn’t matter what day of the week it is, or whether or not it’s a holiday, I do not get days off.
And despite this, my sixth novel is coming out next month. I wrote my first novel in 2010, and it came out in 2012, so that’s a steady output of at least one book a year. So how do I find the time?
I don’t. I make the time. And here’s how you can, too:
1: Prioritise – Joanna Penn gets us started with a simple message that reflects my own views. We all have the same time in the day. If you want to write, make it a priority and see what you can change in your routine to make the time for it.
2: Challenge Your Assumptions – Jamie Rubin is next, discussing how he looked at all the assumptions (read: excuses) he once made for why he didn’t have the time to write, and then challenged them. You won’t get anywhere waiting for your dream situation in which to write. You have to make do with the circumstances you have.
3: Make Your Writing Time Sacred – There’s still a common attitude that writing is just a fun hobby, that it’s not serious work. It’s not their fault, but there will be people in your life who don’t understand how important it is to you that you get you writing done. Here’s some advice for how to make sure you don’t lose your chosen writing time.
4: A Book in One Year – When it comes right down to it, if you want to write a book, you can, and it won’t take much to make the time. Chuck Wendig explains how to write a book in a year by writing only 350 words a day.
5: Is That Not Worth Exploring? – Zen Pencils is a wonderful webcomic, matching quotes from artists, authors, poets, and historical figures with original artwork to tell a story. This one posits that after work, sleep, daily errands, etc., we have six hours a day to use as we please. What could you do with that time?
Hopefully this will help some of you make the time you need. Good luck!
(c) Paul Anthony Shortt