Fitting in Writing Time

Thursday, June 12, 2008
We writers often discuss this, finding time to write. It's not so bad when you're single and childless, except when you give in to procrastination, which even the best writers do at times. If writing were as easy as sitting down and churning out an endless stream of words without pause, many more books would be written. Maybe. Once you add in family obligations, day jobs, children and outside stresses, finding this time becomes more difficult. Some find it impossible and give up altogether, watching the years pass as their dream of publishing a novel or book of poetry fades away.

There is something we can do, even in the midst of chaos, to complete our short stories, our book of essays or our novel. One page a day. That doesn't sound like much, but pages, like pennies, do add up. Even on your busiest day, instead of giving up on writing because you're too tired, too stressed or uninspired, just try for that one page. In a month, you'll have 30 pages. In a year, 365 pages.

On those days when you have more time, you can spend them going over what you've already written. You can edit and polish and try to make it perfect. Instead of viewing the task of completing a book as huge and insurmountable, you can break it up into single sheets of paper that aren't as intimidating. One page a day will yield something tangible and complete one day. When you break it down like that, it almost sounds easy, doesn't it?


Annette said...


Great post! And so true! It's hard though. I have so many stories waiting in line to become books, but I always feel like I have to have uninterrupted, huge blocks of time to write. that's ever going to happen. =/

I'm going to try setting aside one hour a day for new writing (it usually takes me an hour to give birth to a full page). But if I don't do it, those stories will only live in my head--what a boring, cramped, dark place that is! LOL

It reminds me of something from junior high. I had a health class teacher, Mr. Taylor, who had a circle of construction paper covering the clock in his room. On it he had written: Time will pass. Will you?

Time will pass whether we write or not, and I know I don't want to get to the point where my life-clock battery dies and I still haven't done what I want to do...

Anonymous said...

I do agree with you. We can spend so much time thinking about writing when actually getting words on paper achieves more towards our goals. I think we've been on the same wavelength! I found you by using Google Blogseacrh and this is my first visit. I am going to link to you - hope that's OK.

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