The question that a writer dreads; How do I find time to write?
Everyone has 24 hours in a day. Writers and non-writer included.
One way to find time to write is to squeeze every second out of the day you can. You carry a note book and pen or pencil with you every where, and use it. Your standing in line waiting. This is a great place to think up ideas for your story. You’re out of your comfort zone, you’re surrounded by unhappy people, your senses are in over drive, jot down your impressions, ideas, observations. Think hard on your story. Think about incorporating this experience into the story. How would the character handle waiting in line, jot it down.
A minute here and there adds up especially if it’s quality time thinking. But jot it down. The second someone asks you a question the idea or thought is gone with “you want paper or plastic” or “did you bring a bag”. I find walking through a doorway a great idea eraser. Now if walking through a doorway would get rid of the song that keeps running through my head. Write it down before the idea slips away.
Another way to find time to write is to work at it. I know, you didn’t want to hear that but this is the best way to find time to write.
Step 1. List the things you do during the day. It can start as a vague or broad list. The list can be as simple as eat, sleep, work and play (or family time).
a. How can you squeeze time to write out of eating? If you eat in front of the computer or TV then stop it. You are eating for the length of a show or web cast and not tasting your food. This is a good way to gain weight. Eat at a table and talk to the people at the table. They are a great source of ideas and character information.
b. How can you squeeze time to write out of sleeping. Do you watch TV in bed? Then stop. Go exercise, or write. Do you get 8 hours of sleep a night? If not try it. When I am well rested I think better and am more productive. I am on the boarder about reading in bed. Will you remember a book that you read while half asleep? If you write, you have to read but you got to read in something other than the zombie mode.
c. How can I squeeze time out of work? Don’t do it. Work at work, but do you need to take home work form work? Will it get you more pay, is everyone else doing it? You can gather stories form coworkers. These stories can end up in you writing. A coworkers daughter’s outrageous antics at school, work, or at a party, could be perfect for your next book. You can gather character traits and actions for your writing from coworkers and bosses. The second most person that is killed off in a first time murder mystery writer book is her boss. The most often character to get killed off in a first time murder mystery is based on the writer’s husband (or ex). This is from an unofficial list I made from attending a bunch of writer’s signing.
d. How can I squeeze time out of family time? Sitting on the couch watching TV with a family member is not spending time with them, it’s entertaining yourself. If you want to spend time with them talk to them, listen to them. Life is short, when you spend time with someone then spend time with them not with the TV set. Have you ever watched a show because you thought the other person wanted to watch it? Did you ask the other person if they wanted to watch the show? You could waste a whole hour and neither one of you are going to be satisfied.
If you find yourself flipping through the channels then turn off the TV and pick up your pen, pencil, or sharpy and write. You have a half hour of writing time until the next show starts maybe even an hour. If you miss a show it will be back in reruns or syndication. Then there is always binge watching of a show if you really like it. Write now, watch later. If you in a writer’s slump and you think your writing is bad, awful, or worse it is still better to write than to watch bad TV shows.
Above are some things to think about when trying to find more time to write. Still need more time then rethink your day. Does reading an email make you more money at work, make you happy, really necessary to read, then get rid of it. Unsubscribe to email newsletters that don’t improve you or your day. Blow off the emails that want you to buy something. Cut down on trips, do you need to stop at the grocery store every day after work. Make a list and shop once a week.
Everyone has the same amount of time in a day. Some write and some don’t. Use your time wisely.
Write on, draw on. Professor Hyram Voltage