I know I’ve talked about this before on the blog, but it has been a long time, and a lot has changed in my life since then. As a writer, there is always someone around me talking about time — whether there isn’t enough of it, they don’t know how I find it, or the dreaded question, “Is it being wasted?”
Let me break it down for you, and I want you to understand that this is something I struggle with a lot. I think everyone does.
I work a full time job. I commute 1.25 hours each way every day. Every Monday night, Super Spawn has violin lessons. Once or twice a month he has an extra lesson on Saturday morning. We do violin practice every night for 10-20 minutes. I have to feed, bathe, play with, and read to Super Spawn.
If I waited until he went to sleep every night to start thinking about my writing, I’d never get anything done. So, here are some tricks I’ve learned to making the most of the few spare moments I can grab throughout the day.
1. Time in the car - I have about 15-20 minutes in the car between Super Spawn’s school and my office. This is when I work through plot issues, or maybe work through the scene I’m going to write next. This morning on the way in, Super Spawn was plugged into his DVD player in the car, and I was able to plan not only some things to add to previous chapters I’ve written, but I’ve also laid out the next two scenes to be written. That will save me a lot of time when I sit down to write.
2. Lunch – I’ve used my lunch hour to write since I first put pen to paper on my first novel back in 2009. It’s probably my most productive writing time of the day.
3. When kiddo is otherwise engaged – Super Spawn likes to play games/put puzzles together/otherwise entertain himself from time to time. So I take my laptop into whatever room he’s in and type away while he plays at my feet.
4. Bed time – Super Spawn loves to read at bed time, but his taste in books is somewhat different from most 4 year olds. Ask him what his favorite book is and he’ll tell you Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Seriously, that’s what he told his teacher. So at bedtime we read some really great stories that not only challenge his imagination and keep him entranced, but also that keep me abreast of the industry.
5. Night – Usually once Super Spawn finally drifts off, I’m exhausted too. Still, it’s finally some uninterrupted peace to just sit and write. If I could only hold my eyes open a little longer.
What do you all do to make the most out of your days?