By Daniel Ottalini
If you’re anything like me, you’ve got a life. No really, a life! You know, a life outside of the world(s) you create on the electronic page? One filled with friends, family, another job/career, a hobby or interest, vacations, etc. And those parts of your life have requirements. I have to work a certain number of hours a day, between X and Y. I want (and need) to hang out with my family on this date all day long, etc etc. The boys and I will be going to the hockey game next Friday. All of these are great examples of life impacting you and your time.
So how can we make time to write, something we do for fun, for pocket money, for (perhaps) a future career switch. Here are three easy ways to avoid letting your personal life prevent you from contributing to your writing life.
- Schedule your writing – If you know you write best at midnight, schedule a block of time a few days a week to write – no going out with friends, no family duties, no classwork, no job obligations. Obviously, this requires some flexibility in the set up. Don’t schedule it when duties are expected. I’m not writing when I’m busy teaching, but I can set aside a chunk of time every day after school for an hour to sit and write.
- Maximize your writing time. Turn off the internet, the TV, the music, the ipad/ipod, and focus on just the writing. Shut the door and close the blinds. Or, if you find your house is too full of distractions, move somewhere else. Physically. The local library, a small coffee shop, the park. Write until your laptop battery hits 10%, then go home.
- Combine your writing with another activity – Right now, I’m writing this blog post while on vacation. We have some down time, and I’m relaxing by writing, not always the best idea, but it helps me relax and contributes to my excitement to see my writing flow onto the page far better than normal. Use a support group via an organization like Meetup to support your writing and get the juices flowing. Even if you can set aside a half hour during your lunch break at work to write, just to get the creative juices flowing, find the time wherever you can.
Hope those ideas helped you! Do you have any other great ideas for keeping your personal life from impacting your writing life? Share them below! Also, remember to subscribe via the bar to the left, and follow me on twitter and facebook!
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