One Sunday morning a few weeks ago, Tamara took the boys for a hike by the river so that I could get some writing done.
I’ve been writing in bits and pieces, and it’s frustrating and difficult. It’s so hard to move forward with a project. In my fantasies, I live in a cabin in the mountains, and I spend all day every day thinking about whatever novel or short story I am currently writing, with interludes of family time and service work.
But in my real life? I have a full-time job that requires my energy and focus throughout the week, and it’s hard to maintain any momentum when it comes to my fiction projects.
I told Tamara that I felt like I need a huge chunk of time – hours, not minutes – to recharge my writing battery and to reorganize my writing projects. And she made it happen for me without thinking twice. I am often amazed at how supportive Tamara is of this little side hustle of mine that is really just for me. I have hopes and dreams, for sure, of generating income and publishing work, but right now? My writing time has zero concrete outcome other than the preservation of my sanity. I truly hope that the end of my story is: She wrote without publication or income for years and then finally made her writing dream a reality. But I don’t think Tamara minds if that’s not the outcome; she’s just supportive. I’m so grateful for that kind of unconditional support.
It’s amazing how much easier it is to really sink into my writing when I have hours instead of minutes to write. It even allows me to daydream – to take a minute away from the computer to actually think about what I’m trying to do, or to think about what I’m trying to think about. I can take BREAKS. That’s the kind of writing time I love – a chunk of time so long that I actually require little breaks to grab coffee and stretch my legs.
I spent that long Sunday morning, while Tamara took the boys hiking, reorganizing my list of writing projects; looking through drafted blog posts and updating my editorial calendar; and making a writing schedule so that I could maintain focus on my writing projects.
This is what I came up with:
- Every day, I wake up at 4 and I write until the boys wake up. This can be whatever kind of writing – fiction, blogging, journaling. It can even be time devoted to organizing my writing life, via my editorial calendar or an outline for a novel or story. If I’m willing to wake up at 4, I will write whatever I have the energy and creativity to write, with no restrictions.
- On weekends, the boys’ nap time is my writing time. Not only that – there will be a word count goal for that writing time. I’m going to start with 500 words until I get a groove going, but I hope to up it quickly.
I wish there was more time; I hope that there will be more time! But this is my minimum, for now. So grateful for a long Sunday morning to try to wrap my head and my heart around my writing life.