Years ago I conducted a workshop on time management. I had a detailed schedule printed on poster board and meticulously went through every bullet point, being sure to emphasize how important it was to make time for writing on a daily basis. Well, that was before the My Space extravaganza that led to the Facebook and Twitter explosion, which is now only rivaled slightly by Pinterest, LinkedIn, Goodreads and so many more, social network devices designed to either drive an author insane or drive the sale of their books. Which one would you prefer?
Of course, the answer would be the latter, but more often than not we walk pretty close to the going insane line. Here’s the one fact that cannot be changed or re-invented or even ignored for that matter: there are only 24 hours in a day. And with that it mind, it is still imperative for every professional writer to wholeheartedly embrace a time management strategy.
I’m a wife, mother and full-time writer. I also work a full-time paralegal job at a very busy city courthouse. I could clearly use more hours in a day, but like I said before, the 24-hour thing can’t be changed. So I had to figure out how I was going to get everything done and not wear myself out completely. I’m a morning person so I wake up with the chickens—or maybe even before them—around three or four a.m. I put clothes in the washer—because with three kids and a husband there are always dirty clothes—then I sit down to write. I used to be able to get in about two hours of good writing time before having to wake the kids and head out to work and school. Then social networking arrived and that time was cut in half because I cannot access the social network sites at work. That sounds bad, but it actually turns out to be a good thing because whenever I have a free moment at work I use it to write, without the pressure of having to visit my social networks. I rarely write in the evening since homework, dinner prep, hubby time, and my need to be in bed by eight, overrules the creative process. Yes, this is a grueling schedule and every now and then I’m reminded that I need a break. At which time, I take one. Maybe that’s a day off from the day-job, or a weekend away from all social networking. Sometimes I do both. J
But I still write something every day. It may be 2000 words on a WIP instead of 5-7K, or the beginning of an outline for a new project, or a blurb from an idea that I had the day before and jotted down on a piece of paper that ended up floating around the bottom of my purse. I write every day.
How about you? Do you think time management is imperative to writers? Why or why not? I’d love to hear your thoughts so please feel free to comment. At the end of the week I’ll pick one lucky post to win a signed copy of my latest paranormal romance release, Passion’s Prey.
***AC Arthur's winner is Mary Kirkland! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your mailing information. Thanks!***