I don’t have time to write. I don’t have time to exercise. I don’t have time to create a blog post.
I don’t have time to do whatever.
I think many of us say some permutation of this on a frequent basis, and the truth of the matter is sometimes it’s true. We all have a ton of competing things jockeying for top spot in our lives.
Relationship. Family. Children. Job. Sleep. Eating. Exercise. Writing. The list goes on and on and there are only twenty-four hours in a day.
And yet, as my friend John Hartness pointed out two nights ago, it’s also bullshit. We all have time to do exactly what it is we want to do. Simple fact.
We have to work. We all require some sleep. But for writers, we can choose whether or not to open up our word processor or put pen to paper, or as Stuart Jaffe recommends, even dictate into a recorder. Unfortunately, as I have discovered, books don’t write themselves.
The truth is we all want to write. And sleep. And see our significant other. And spend time with our kids. And. And. And.
For writers, especially those with day jobs (which is a big majority of us) I think it’s sometimes rough to find time to do all the things we are told we are supposed to do.
Put down 2,000 new words on your WIP per day. Be active on Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest / Instagram / Tumblr / etc. Blog. Make appearances at conventions / bookstores / writers groups. Be available.
Life is a pie chart. For writers, our writer life is just one piece of the pie. We have to decide how much of our day/week is “writer”. Then, that pie piece gets divided as well. If we spend it all promoting, when do we write? If we spend it all writing, when do we promote? And especially when there’s no guarantee our WIP will be picked up or our social media message will be seen, sometimes I think we feel like we’re shouting into the void.
Trust me, I’d love to have my 2,000 words every day and write a novel in 2 months AND have a daily blog AND get out a significant heartfelt message every 2-3 hours to all my Tweeps and Facebook friends. But I can’t. Even with Hootsuite. 😉
So, today, I spent the morning with my girlfriend who I’ve barely seen in a week, and this weekend I’m going to go see Avengers 2 and share a meal or three with a good friend who is coming into town so we can watch the Hulk and friends beat up some robots, visit a couple friends at their various book signings, get at least 6-8 hours of sleep each night, and try to knock out some words in the space between. Just crossed 39K last night on the #WIP last night, and am about to enter a very cool fight scene!
But first, I thought I’d leave a few words here. Just where my thoughts went this morning. To my fellow writers out there, if you don’t do it all, or don’t even want to this week, that’s okay. Enjoy life. Kiss your children/wives/husbands/significant others. Get your sleep. But don’t forget to write. As they say, that’s what makes you a writer.
Officially as all over the place as I’ve ever been. Have a great Friday, all!