Thursday, December 6, 2018

It's About Time Management

On of my authors posted a while ago on social media wondering how and when other authors got their writing in daily. This was a great chance to see different approaches, but the one thing that stood out to me was a common response from many authors. Writing always took second fiddle to other things in their life.

Writing is one of those unique activities where people can get paid to do a hobby. For many authors, their careers started out as being simply a hobby writer. They would journal. They would take continuing education classes to fill their days. They might even join a writing circle. In all of the cases, however, this activity was simply a hobby, so it made a lot of sense that writing was never a priority in their lives.

But things change when a writer moves to the professional side of things.

I always tell authors that when they become professionals, they are now taking on a JOB! This IS a career. And, because it is a career, it needs to be treated like any other job you would have.

Think about this. If you are working in the corporate world, do you just work when you want to? No! You have a schedule. You have deadlines. You have to be at work at a certain time and you leave at a certain time. Writing needs to be treated just the same way.

Now, I fully understand that for the majority of writers, they already have a full time career. Guess what? You now have TWO and that means that you have to treat the second job, being a writer, with the same respect as that first one.

Successful writing means that you set a schedule and you work with that. No more excuses. If, for example, you know that with your regular schedule and kids activities, Monday, Wednesday and Friday are great times to write since they are at soccer practice for 2 hours on those days, then that is your writing time. No house cleaning. Now grocery shopping. You use those 2 hours.

This also requires talking to the other people in your life. They need to know that your writing is not a hobby, but a job, and you need their support. This might mean that on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, those are the days that your significant other cooks the dinner.

I will have to say, as long as you treat your writing as just something you do when you have time, you will not make it in this business.

1 comment:

  1. I don't think anyone realizes the time it takes to put out a quality draft, let alone a completed top quality piece of work. You really do need to take the time to perfect the words.

    Great advice as always. Thank you for your words of wisdom.