In line with my New Year’s goals and plans to keep writing a part of my life throughout the year, I made the overdue move of renewing my library card. And in doing so, I came upon a book that talked about how to be a writer while also working a full time job. This seemed incredibly relevant to all would-be writers, and it quickly. moved to the top of my stack of things to read.
I won’t lie, I was a little disappointed overall by the book. It suggested taking lunch breaks to write (can’t do that – lunch breaks are time spent caring for the outdoor critters) or utilizing commuter time (work from home). However, it also talked about taking tiny windows as they were available and simply writing down a few words, or an idea, a line of dialogue. That was what stuck with me. The concept of not giving up entirely, even in the middle of the work grind.
With a full time job and a part time farm, some days there isn’t a lot of time to do anything other than eat and go to bed, but somehow, that book managed to instill in me the principle of writing even when there was little time or even inclination. I am also a firm believer that to think about the story is also a way of spending time with the story, and even if pen does not meet paper or fingers do not meet keyboards, we can still advance the story by taking the time to consider it even in the chaos that might be our day-to-day lives.
Once upon a time, I used to write books in a matter of days and weeks, certainly not months or years. My record for finishing NaNoWriMo was 8 days. In those days, if I couldn’t finish a story in a matter of days, the story was simply never finished. Now, I’m working to change my way of thinking about what is a success and what is a failure when it comes to my stories. Sunday night, I wrote 800ish words, didn’t finish a chapter, didn’t even manage to post anything. But it was still a success, because I hadn’t lost sight of the story.
As I make my way through 2023, my goal is to take things nice and slow – to write when I can, to think about my words even when I can’t, and to not lose sight of the plan of keeping writing an active part of my life.
What are your goals for 2023? Any progress made on them so far?
Until next time –