Finding Time to write By Shaye Jenna

Finding time to write can be one of the biggest challenges for a writer. Many of us have full time jobs, families to take care of and chores to complete each and every week.

So how do you find the time to write in between all that other stuff? Well, it’s not always easy, but it can be done. You can carve out hours and even minutes in your day to write. And trust me, it all adds up. So here are my four favourite strategies for finding more time to write:

Pick a specific chunk of time to write each day or week and stick to it If you look hard enough, you will be able to carve out a chunk of time in your day (I promise). When I worked full time, my lunch hour was my writing time. Now, at home with young kids, naptime is when I write. It doesn’t matter if the house is a mess, there’s washing to be put out, or I’m still not even dressed for the day. When babies go down, I write. And I don’t stop until they wake up.

Take advantage of your commute Most of us have some kind of commute during the day, whether by bus, train, or car. You can’t always use the time to write (it wouldn’t exactly be safe in the car), but that doesn’t mean you can’t use the time wisely. Reading in your genre, researching for your novel, or learning more about the craft of writing can all be done while you’re getting from point A to point B. So grab a book, a book-on-tape, or even a voice recorder to record ideas and use that commute.

Use tiny moments of stillness Ever found yourself sitting in a meeting room for ten minutes before anyone else arrives? Ever been at the dentist waiting for an appointment that should have started half an hour ago? These are the moments of stillness in your life, and you’re crazy if you don’t utilise them. Always, always, always have some paper and a pen or a book to read in your bag. These tiny moments add up, so don’t waste them.

Become an early riser A lot of people will hate this one, but it has to be mentioned. If you just can’t find the time to write during the day, then get up early when the rest of the house is still asleep. You’ll probably find you work twice as fast with no distractions, and after doing it for a while, it will likely become habit and not so painful.

The ideas are simple, but they really can make a difference if you put them into practice. Why not pick your favourites and trial them for a few weeks to see if they help you find more time to write.

Do you have a favourite strategy for finding more time to write?

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