Yes, even full-time writers struggle for finding time to write–creatively, that is. Several of my friends have impressive and strict writing routines. Some fit their personal writing in daily before the 9-to-5, others afterwards. Others only have a short time each week.
The struggle for creative writing time is always present in my life. I may have used this example before, but I find it is particularly resonant among creatives: An old friend of mine years ago who was into art said one of his instructors told him that you need to create everyday–even if you just draw a line on a page. As writers, what should we do? Write a word? Perhaps.
If I only have time to write a thought I feel like I shouldn’t even bother, that it is not enough. On the rare occasion when I realize I can squeeze an hour in for my personal writing, I feel like that isn’t enough.
My love inspires me with his energy and impresses (and annoys!) me with how he guards his time for his own projects. He has spent the last few months re-building the Miata’s engine. He designed and built a turbo and modified the engine to fit it. After he works a full day he goes straight into the garage and tinkers, welds, designs, etc. and only comes in for dinner – then he is back outside garage-ing (as I like to call it) until late. It’s amazing how much he has accomplished over the past few months. (Today he plans to start the engine–so let’s hope it vrooms well!) It’s all a result of the fact that almost everything else comes secondary to his garage time. We’ve been late meeting friends, to movies, to dinner reservations, and other things–because my love is busy, making progress, and other things. He is so proud of what he’s doing that he doesn’t feel guilty being inconsiderate of other people’s time.
My personal time usually caters to our pets, other people’s schedules/appointments, and the like. In spare moments, I look for and submit my poetry and short stories to contests, journals, etc. Time for generative work has been secondary, but my love has inspired me to change that. Time for dinner? That will have to wait! Time to meet friends? They will have to wait! Time to meet a potential client? Well, they won’t have to wait – but I’ve been scheduling more meetings closer to home or by phone instead of catering to the needs of others.
I am very proud that I purposefully scheduled meetings this month so that I had an entire week meeting-free! Also very proud to say I spent four dedicated glorious hours writing yesterday. 🙂
My daily routines change seasonally without my interference. Shorter and longer days and weather changes have a push and pull. One week from today is Daylight Savings. With this shift comes more change. One thing I am conscious about right now is protecting my writing time – or in a way, saving it.