By Cait Collins
Time is precious and we never seem to have enough of it. We fill our lives with work, social commitments, kids’ events and projects, and so on. In the process of stretching ourselves paper-thin, we forget we have a job. We are writers. We should be scheduling time to actually commit words to paper.
I admire my fellow writers who have full or part-time jobs and still commit to spending a specified time each day to their publishing careers. I’ve tried to come home from work, sit down at the computer, and open my current project. Unfortunately my brain doesn’t shift gears that quickly. I’ve found my most productive hours are between 8 and 11 in the evening, three nights each week. That provides time to catch up on my email, do research, and work on synopsis and submissions. It’s not a perfect plan, but it works for me.
One person’s schedule may be a disaster for another. If five to seven in the morning is your best time, great. Put those hours on the schedule and stick to the plan. Do not allow others to make you feel guilty for pursuing your writing career. Your novel, tech manual, memoir, or travel articles are as important as your nine to five job. Your family, friends, and fans will be thrilled when your work is published.
We all know life interferes with the best plans. People get sick, unexpected company drops by; the kids have a last minute project and need your help. When things happen, take a deep breath, add thirty minutes to your schedule for the next four days and catch up. Just remember you are a writer. This is your job. And one day, you will reap the rewards of patience, persistence, and perseverance.