Saturday, 25 February 2017

Writing: making time when there is no time

no time to writer

As a rural homeschooling mother, I live a very non-glamorous life. If you stop by our house on any given day, you are a lot likelier to find me checking math assignments or mucking out the chicken coop than writing. I have no writing space of my own. I work on the family computer, which is located in the living room and from which I am constantly dragged away by sibling squabbles, sinkfuls of dishes or midnight exhaustion.

So how do you work on your book when you literally have no time to write? Not because you are addicted to computer games, or to Game of Thrones re-runs, or because social media takes up 90% of your leisure time? I will share what works for me, and you are welcome to take it or leave it.

1. Gestate your story. Books might be born the moment you put pen to paper (fingers to keyboard), but they are gestated within your head. It's really like being pregnant; for a long stretch of time, it seems as though nothing is happening, while in fact, things are bubbling and transforming and growing under the surface. Nobody can prevent you from thinking, planning, dreaming, living out your story while you do mindless tasks such as washing the dishes or chopping up potatoes.

2. Outlines are your friends. If you just count on winging it when you sit down in front of the screen, you will inevitably lose time on dawdling and thinking what it is, actually, that you want to write. If you know exactly what you want to do, on the other hand, you just sit down and do it as soon as you have a free snippet of time, however short. You'll be surprised at how many words you can type out in fifteen minutes if you know exactly where you are heading. 

3. Don't dawdle! Don't waste you time by saying to yourself, I only have ten minutes now, so I might as well check Facebook. No; these ten minutes might be all you have in a day for creative writing. You can squeeze in a few hundred words in that short time - just experiment and see if you can't, writing top-speed. I carved out hundreds of thousands of words from those niggardly, hard-earned minutes which could be interrupted any moment. Don't expect the luxury of having uninterrupted peaceful hours for writing. Tough luck if you don't have them. I sure wish I had. But I don't, so I make do with what I have.

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To get more writing advice for those who are suffocating from lack of time, check out my FREE e-book, Writing Tips for Busy People. It is easily downloadable from Payhip and you are welcome to share it with other authors.

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