One of the things I hear in the blogging and writing community is “I don’t have enough time”. Children, work and other obligations get in the way of being able to express oneself in the written form. Do you resent those interruptions or do you embrace the time constraints you are under? How does embracing time constraints help us?
It’s the weekend and you have the kids in sports, yard work to complete, family to visit, events to attend… and as much as you want to write for hours and hours you struggle to find the 10 minutes here or there. You take the time at the sports game to write, you grab 20 minutes while the spouse showers, or whatever have you. Do you lament that you don’t have enough time or enough money?
But seriously… if you offer me a whole weekend just to write you know what happens? I have tea with a friend, I run to the store to get whatever munchies I need (usually chocolate), and sit in front of my computer drawing a blank. IT’S ANNOYING! Like seriously. AND not only do I suffer that malady I’ve noticed other writer friends do exactly the same thing! Why is that?
Why do we want the time, and then when we get it, the writing doesn’t pan out the way we think it should?
Do you think just maybe that the fitting our writing in the events in our lives could actually be the best way to do it? That the very busyness we lament is the glue that focuses our creativity? That those short time frames actually give us a goal to push through?
“You don’t actually have to write anything until you’ve thought it out. This is an enormous relief, and you can sit there searching for the point at which the story becomes a toboggan and starts to slide.” —Marie de Nervaud, WD Click To Tweet
A given week
Take for instance a given week for me… I’ll have three blog posts to write just for me and two to write as reviews, and then I’ll have papers to mark as well. What happens? I know that my son has army cadets on Monday nights so guess what happens in that two hour time span he’s away.. I WRITE! Two hours, just for me. In that two hours, if I’m focused (ie no tv on, no munchies, sitting a the dining table) I can push out three or four reviews freeing up time to have a nap next week! (or more liking more writing just for fun). BUT if the lad’s at home you know what happens? We’ll play a game, watch TV and what not… and those two hours will be frittered away TOGETHER which is good, but then I have to try to write later as I wait for hubby to come home from work and I end up napping half the time. GAH! That free time with the lad away… it’s GOLDEN! But in the times that I am busy with my lad, or walking with hubby, or showing a student how to fry an egg, in the back of my mind I’m thinking… how an I talk about the word Crowd? Or how can I help my lad remember his cookie recipe? When I care for my bunnies I think about a conversation with Michelle about writing an animal husbandry column.
And before I know, my whole post is written, it just needs to spill out from my brain to the laptop and it is SO much easier and quicker and half the editing is done already.
Cherish the Busyness
I say cherish the busyness, see it for what it is. A time restriction that forces our brains to work around ourselves, enabling us to focus our thoughts, to refine the words bumping around inside, spilling out through the keyboard or out on paper. Cherish it. All those goal inspiring moments help us to write to our best. It’s a grand thing indeed.
Just as we need to plan our writing space, and find routines that work for us we also need to embrace the lives we live. The distractions, the busyness, and the running around. It’s part of what makes us who we are. Embrace the time constraints of your life, it gives you needed goals that make you a more productive author.