Friday, January 6, 2012

Writing Schedules

Do you have a writing schedule?

This was a question posted in an online forum that I am part of recently, and I must say I was shocked by the variety of responses (over 200). Some people write for 8-10 hours per day, others are happy to get 1 hour a week. Some people have a word-count goal, others are appalled by the idea of any kind of goal and only write when they can and when they want. Some people write first thing in the morning others write after everyone else is in bed. Some people write at home, others write at work, or in a restaurant, lounge or library.

As a stay-at-home, work-at-home, mother of four, and house wife, I have no choice but to write at home (or occasionally at the park while the kids play). I write on and off through the day when there is time, but I have set aside a small block of time at bedtime each day to get some work done. I don't do word count, as that really isn't the kind of writing I am doing right now. I have smaller goals like, finish an interview, write a devotion, or finish some other project that I am working on. I like to give myself deadlines so that I don't get overly bogged down with projects that I need to get finished. I find that having a set time to work is extremely helpful in reaching goals, and having goals is essential to keep from getting behind.

I think whether or not you should have a writing schedule, or what kind of writing goals you have, depends on what kind of writing you are doing, but also what stage of life you are in. I would love to make writing my #1 priority, but that wouldn't make since at this point of time in my life. I have to care for my children, I have to clean the house, I have to live life, and while writing and editing is my dream, I have to keep it everything in proper prospective. Besides that, if I were to make writing my number 1 priority right now, I would miss out on so many events in my children's lives that only happen once. I have my whole life to write, but only a few short years with my precious children. I also made the commitment when I started taking on free-lance work that God and my family have to come first. That doesn't mean that I can't tell them I have to get my work done (because it is still a job), it just means that I don't take on more work then I can get done in less than a few hours a day. It means that I don't write or edit anything before I read my Bible each morning.

What about you? Do you have a writing schedule or writing goals? Where does writing fit into your list of priorities?

3 comments:

  1. Oh the joys of having a little one who naps! Naptime is my writing time, though as I look ahead to busier days like yours, I wonder where writing will fit in! But, we adjust season to season.

    As for word counts, when I'm working on a manuscript (solely, like during NaNoWriMo), I set word count goals, but when I'm in editing mode I set time allotments for writing (working on another project, a blog post, an article, etc.), then a larger chunk for editing, then some time for social media. And during social media time, I tend to add "rewards" like snacks and Netflix in the background--because a mom's gotta sneak those in when she can! :D

    And I really like the no-writing-or-editing-before-reading-the-Bible rule. That's beautiful and one I'll have to file away for the future. Thanks!

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  2. Some how I miss labeled this post, but I have corrected the error now. I do word counts for NaNo too... but it's much easier the rest of the year when I just work at my own pace.

    I heard a very convicting recording today where the speaker said that she didn't do ANYTHING until after her morning Bible time. I would love that, but my kids are still at the young enough age where they are sometimes up before the sun, and then it get's pushed back until they are settled with something else...

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