The days are getting shorter and colder, the fireplace hosts sparking embers and dancing flames to warm frozen toes and fingers, and a favorite beverage sits close by ready to warm the insides. The writer sits intensely focused, fingers perched over keys ready to begin the long textual journey. Sounds idyllic, right? But unfortunately, it’s not very realistic.
Let me start again. My fireplace insert needs a part and I won’t be able to use it until Thanksgiving. I’ve got to to pick up some things for supper, and my wife also asked me to get some super glue so I can fix a small stone turtle that she dropped. If I carve out a couple of hours later today for writing and I pour myself a nice merlot, it’s unlikely there’ll be any supper waiting when she gets home.
That’s a long way of saying that finding time to write regularly isn’t always easy especially if you are juggling other responsibilities like children and a job. If you work nine to five during the week, sitting down to write after you eat may be the last thing you feel like doing. Add kids into the mix, and sleep may be higher on your priority list after a long day. So what do you do?
If writing is something that you really want to do, try to set realistic goals. Trying to write five or ten thousand words a week may not be realistic. Writing a thousand words (or 2 pages) may be. Think about what you have to do to set aside a couple of hours of ‘me’ time. Some people do this by getting up early before the chaos of the day begins and writing. Other folks do this by going to the local library (or coffee shop) while the kids are in a library program or playing soccer or over a friends house.
Another way to keep up your level of enthusiasm, learn how to improve your writing and get feedback on your current writing project, is to join a local writing group. Many cities and towns have these and they often meet at the local library. I found out about two groups by inquiring at the circulation desk.