Finding Time to Write

December 3, 2012

Is it really three weeks before Christmas? I’m not sure. I spent Halloween at training in Arizona for my new “real job,” and Thanksgiving was something of a blur. Normally, this time of year, I’m busy wrapping gifts, decorating and my kitchen becomes a cookie factory. Instead, my kitchen is a little lonely, gifts are piling up in the spare room waiting to be wrapped, and the Thanksgiving decorations still grace the mantle and piano, looking a little less than gracious now that it’s December.

But, I’ve finally gotten into a little routine, and I’m making time to write. I get up in the morning, do my chores, occasionally throw some dinner in the slow-cooker, and then I spend some time with my manuscript.

Okay, last week, I spent most of my writing time transferring files from my PC to my laptop, then rereading my previous work, but at least I was able to find the time to write.

I’m learning to reprioritize. It isn’t easy. For twenty-three years I’ve stayed home and taken care of the house, finances, kids, shopping and cooking. Sometimes doing a better job than others! We’re down to just three of us in the house, Hunky Hubby, Middle Son and me. So, I’ve realized that although the housework has to be done…well, needs to be done, I could save 10+ hours a week if I limit or eliminate cooking. Between the shopping, actual food preparations and clean up, I spend a lot of hours in that kitchen.

So, I’m reprioritizing. Writing has moved up the list. I no longer have small children to feed, no helping with homework, no chauffeuring kids to activities. Middle son does his own laundry, and Hunky Hubby is stepping up and sharing the chore load now that I‘m working full time. I’m a little sad about some of that, but it means I can write.

It feels strange when I realize I haven’t made a menu, I have no idea what’s in the food ads, and there’s nothing simmering on the stove, and there’s definitely guilt involved. Yes, in addition to being the Queen of Run On Sentences, I’m the First Lady of Guilt. I’m trying to let go.

I will get those Thanksgiving decorations put away this week, finish wrapping gifts and make a few batches of our favorite Christmas cookies, but Hunky Hubby and I may be grabbing tacos from our favorite taqueria, chicken kabobs from our favorite Mediterranean restaurant, and clam chowder from our favorite diner, so that I can finish this manuscript, get it out into the world, and start on the next story which is lurking in the shadows, waiting to be put on paper.

I know I’ve asked before, but what do you do to make time for your writing? How do you prioritize? And are you baking cookies for Christmas?

Tari

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