“I want to write a book. I just don’t have the time right now.”
You have a full-time job, a family, a partner, children and a billion and one other responsibilities. I get it. I have a full-time job. Yes, I may have the luxury form working from home but the reality is, most days I begin work at 7 am and don’t close my laptop again until after 5 pm (excluding lunch hour.) Why? As a freelancer, I don’t receive sick pay, paid holiday or a pension. Plus, as my job is anything but secure, I feel the need to pump a lot of time and energy into each of my projects.
So, trust me. I get it. I really do. That’s why I’ve put together a few tips and tricks to help you find the time to write.
Plan All Of Your Time
This may go against your natural instincts (it goes against all of mine) but if you really want to write a book you need to either:
- Find the time
- Make the time
In most cases, you will have to do a combination of both of these. The only way to do this is to plan each day, preferably hour-by-hour. This will help you see and fill any pockets of free time you may have.
I recommend Google calendars. Once you fill in your schedule, you will have access to it on your phone so you will never be without it.
See any gaps in your schedule that will be ideal for a short writing session? If you can’t, we’re going to have to make the time, instead. It’s not going to be easy but if you want to finally start/finish that book, it needs to be done.
Ask for help
Do you take your kids to football practice, after-school classes or piano lessons? Ask another parent if they would take turns taking the children to their class/practice. Alternatively, ask your partner/family member for help with your daily chores or errands. Explain to them what you plan to do with the extra time. Chances are, if they are able to, they will help you.
There will be something in your schedule that you can sacrifice for your book. Whether you are willing to do it or not is an entirely other matter. Attend a lot of social events? Give one or two a miss this month and dedicate your evening to writing. Spend your evenings relaxing on the sofa with your partner? Tell them that you want to spend every other night working on your novel. It won’t be easy but if you want to finish your book, it needs to be done.
5 AM Writer’s Club
If there is no wriggle room in your days, you may have to start waking up earlier. Join a 5 am writers club online and connect with other early morning writers. If, like me, you can’t function before 8 am (or later), spend that extra hour doing chores. Prep the dinner, do the washing, tidy the house – do whatever task you can (that doesn’t require brain power) to give yourself the time you need to write later in the day.
Extra Tip: Delete Social Media Apps
Just this morning, I spent 25 minutes mindlessly scrolling through Instagram. When I opened the app, it told myself I would only look for 5 minutes. I should have known better. If you’re in the habit of spending too much time scrolling, delete the apps and spend that time working towards
Some Parting Words: Your Dreams Are Important
I always feel like there is something more important that I could be doing just before I sit down to write – cooking, cleaning, getting ahead of my work. Just remember: Every successful author started where you are now. They had their doubts. They were scared. But they followed their dreams – and so can you. Don’t ever think that your dreams
This post was inspired by a comment posted on Why You Haven’t Started Writing Your Book. I think that it’s important to share our experiences and stories with each other and build a supportive community for writers. So please, leave a comment if you have any questions, advice or stories to share.
Announcement: I have set myself the task of writing my book in just 12 weeks. I have been meaning to do this for a while, but have always put it off for some other (more important) project. Well, enough is enough.
I’ve made a plan and now I am finally putting it into action.
Want to join me? Follow me on Instagram where I will be posting daily updates.