It is my honor to introduce you to my friend Abby who, as I have mentioned on this blog before, is an aspiring young adult author and my critique partner. I asked her recently to do a guest post and she took the time out of her very busy schedule to do it. She is a great writer and a good friend, and your lives will be better for having read her guest post.
Finding the Time
As I sit here, surfing the net for bedding sets instead of writing, it made me think of this post I’m supposed to be writing for Andy. So, I thought I’d start it now. What a better time to write a blog post about time management when I am wasting my time as we speak! Well, not anymore since technically now I am not wasting my time since I am writing a post I told Andy I’d do.
Anyway, we all have different ways of managing our time. Some of us are great at it, and get everything done on their “to-do” lists and then some. I like to call those people “overachievers”. Then, there are those that procrastinate and do everything other than what is on their to-do list. I call those people…well, me. Okay, I’m not that bad I guess. But let me tell you, trying to juggle a “day job”, a 4year old, a house, writing a novel, a social life, and oh, did I mention a husband in there somewhere?…is just plain hard!
I just read a really great blog post by Maggie Stiefvater about time management, and she really hits the nail on the head for me. She talked about having children, and making time to write when you are just starting out. It’s what I am going through now, as well. The number one thing for me, is that I need to carve out specific times during the day or week that is “my writing time”. If I designate a time to do it, it’s like going to my job. It’s on my calendar-in pen- so I have to do it. If I dedicate myself to that, then most of the time it gets done (with a little bit of procrastination on the side).
But the big question for those of us with children is, when exactly do I have time to write? My answer- if you love it, you’ll find time. I love my daughter, and I love spending time with her, as well as my husband. But my Little Monster (I call her that because she is obsessed with Lady Gaga, and she calls her fans her “Little Monsters” so, she is her Littlest Monster) is not my WHOLE life. I am not her slave. I do not wait on her hand and foot. I know some people whose children are what they live for. They are their whole lives, and they know nothing else. They don’t know what’s going on in the world, they don’t keep up with the latest trends in whatever, and they don’t have much interaction with adults. If my life was like that, I think I’d explode. No one would like mama, then.
So, I make time for myself. Little Monster has quiet times during the day, and I utilize that time to work on what I need to, be it writing, reading, keeping up with blogs, or keeping up with My Shows (I have to have My Shows, people!). I am trying to narrow that down to mostly writing right now, so I can get this first novel up and running, but it takes time to adjust (the procrastination thing really gets me some days). I also have Monday nights as my night to write. Little Monster goes to bed early, and then after that I just write until I’m dizzy and the screen’s all fuzzy. Hubs is at work, so I have no distractions.
And that is how it has to be for now. Hopefully, once I can get my first novel published, the goal is to be able to write full time. That will open up a whole new slew of time management issues. But for now, I deal with the reality of my situation and do what I need to do. Because I love to write. I love telling stories, and yes, it’s very hard and sometimes I just want to give up. But in the end, I come back to it and coax it back to life. Because it’s what I want to do, and it’s who I want to be, and it makes me happy.
Thanks Andy, for letting me invade your blog to drone on and on about making time to write! Seriously people, if you love it, stop making excuses and just sit down and do it! Now to listen to my own advice…wait, Old Navy’s having a sale? Let me just check on their website…