Saturday, August 14, 2010

Finding Time To Write

Full-time job  Household chores  training runs   kids   soccer practice   basketball games  karate volunteer work  church activities

I barely have time to write!

People often say that you need to set aside time to write.  Block an hours time for yourself.  For me, that’s not always possible.  So, I have to make use of what little time that I have.  I found that as long as I have a notebook, pencil, and my mind (yes, my mind- I sometimes leave it in la-la land) with me at all times, I can utilize every minute of my day to my advantage.  Here’s how you can too:

Mental Prep Work

Even if you don’t have time to write, there will be time for you to at least think about what you are going to write.  You don’t need your notebook or pencil for this.  I consider this time “prep time” or the planning stage of your writing.  Here’s where you can find time to think about your story:
·        While you workout- whether it’s running, biking, swimming, walking, or hiking, you can start creating ideas your mind as you exercise.  I think about character, setting plot, and start formulating a story in your head.  You can also do this at half-time at a sporting event.
·        At work- you may find some down time.  Down time are those chances you get when there is no need for interactions or when you are doing meaningless work.  That time is a good time for creating.

Writing It All Down

Now that you have your ideas, character, or plot in your head, it’s time to write them down.  It is easier to write when you have a story in your mind.  The few minutes that you do have can be spent pouring out your idea on paper without wasting a moment on thinking.  You can do this as soon as you get home from your activity or as soon as you get a chance. 

Finding Those Nuggets 

Finding time to write in a busy schedule can be done.  Here’s where it’s possible:
·        During your lunch hour.  An hours time is like gold.  So, your lunch hour is a valuable time to write.  I’m sure you can chew and write at the same time, right?
·        While you wait in a parking lot.  For example, while waiting for you kids to get out from school or from their activities.
·        As a passenger in a car or on public transportation.  This is a great time to write (if you don’t get motion sickness).
·        After the kids are tucked in at night or a few minutes before your bedtime.  This is a nice quiet time to write and release your thoughts onto paper.  That’s why you should always keep a notebook and pencil by your bedside.

Ahh…Finally, Some time!

Then when you have that luxury of a blocked-out time for writing, you can enjoy your computer and retype your handwritten stories so it is eligible for further editing.

Used with permission from Debbie Ridpath Ohi at
So you see, you can find time to write.  Every down-time, rest, or waiting period you have is an opportunity to write.

Try my tips.  If you still can’t do it, then you’ll need a vacation!

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