I had to modify my post this week. I wrote it out when I was really tired, and when I looked over it later, I just didn’t like how it turned out. I wrote a list of all the things I did that day in order to show why I didn’t have time to write a decent post. Now, if I had been Sheena, it would’ve been hilarious, but alas, I am not Sheena, and my list was kind of boring, which I suppose is somewhat a reflection of my life.
I just had one of those days where I felt like I worked all day long and accomplished nothing. I have those far too frequent. The time just flies by and those little things that should only take a minute seem to take up huge chunks of time. I’m sure everyone has days like that. Anyway, it was a bit cathartic for me to map it out, to try to figure out where my day went, but I don’t think it worked well as a blog post, so rather than cringe every time I see it up there, I thought I’d just hash out a new one real quick.
There are no big writing lessons in this post, just a general rant about how hard it is to find time to write. In looking my day laid out, I could see little moments here or there where I could’ve done more and been more productive, so it is helpful to examine your day and see those missed opportunities. But sometimes those moments are needed. Perhaps I’m a wimp, but I need a little downtime here and there to kind of recuperate and get back out there.
I always get a little frustrated when I see the writing advice to treat writing as a job, to buckle down and get serious and write, write, write, and read, read, read or you will never make it. The problem is I would love to do that. I would love to spend eight hours a day reading novels and writing, but the time just isn’t there. I’m a stay at home mom and I know so many people in our society don’t take that job serious, but honestly, my job never ends. I am at work and on call all day and all night. Every day, including vacations. All parents do this. Working parents work all day and care for kids at night. There isn’t room to treat writing as a second job because unless you beg or pay someone else to watch your kids, you are taking care of them. You are working.
I’ve tried to get serious and push harder and just neglect the house, the kids, and the husband a little to get more writing done. It took me a week before I could feel a tension in the house, and my poor husband got the worst of it. I gave him very little time, and the time he got was me being crabby and frustrated because I was still falling behind on all my imaginary deadlines. After a week, I knew I couldn’t keep it up. It was hurting everyone around me including myself, and I wasn’t even getting paid for it.
I know that there are writers out there who are stay at home moms just like me and get a lot more writing done than I do, and I’d love to get some tips if you have any to share. I heard Stephenie Meyers wrote Twilight in three months while taking care of more kids than I got, and the youngest was a toddler. To me that is just amazing. How did she do that? But I'm not sure what she did would work for me for me and my family (although I’m willing to try any suggestions). We are all so different. The bottom line is that I just have to have patience and do the best I have with the time I got.
I still believe and hope (fingers crossed) that as my kids get older, I’ll have more time for writing. Hopefully if I ever get a contract, I’ll have figured out how to be more productive, and if I get enough money coming in, maybe I could even afford to hire a babysitter here and there and a maid service to get a little more writing time. Dare to dream.
So, I’d still love to hear from all you writing parents out there. How do you find the time to write?