How to Find Time to Write (Guest Post)

How do fiction writers find time to write? When looking over their daily schedules, it often seems like there just aren’t enough hours in the day. Even with a busy schedule, writers can always find small bits of time to craft that fabulous novel. Let’s take a look at some tips that should help you find some free time to write during the week.

  • Lunchtime: Instead of chatting with co-workers, dining at a four star restaurant, or wandering around Facebook, use your lunch break to write.
  • Communications: How many minutes per week do you spend reading and responding to unnecessary text messages? Surely, writing your wonderful novel is more important. And no more tweeting or Facebooking until you finish writing! Don’t let telephone conversations drag on. All this time really adds up.
  • Appointments: Appointments away from the office or home such as doctor’s appointments or a hairdresser appointments provide great opportunities to write. You don’t need to read a year old magazine while you’re waiting. Use a tech gadget (if you own one) to write, or just jot down some ideas on note cards.
  • The morning: Quit hitting the snooze alarm. Get up early and do some writing before you go to work. Also, set the alarm an hour earlier than necessary. Over the long-term, you’ll get a lot done by writing for an hour every morning.
  • Taking care of children: While they’re playing or napping, squeeze in some writing time.
  • Entertainment: Cutback on watching television by AT LEAST half. Most people stretched out on their death bed don’t say, “I wish I had spent more time watching television!”
  • Schedule time: Schedule time for writing every day. Inform family members and friends of your writing periods so they’ll leave you alone.
  • The weekend: Let the kids clean the house! Try to spend a few hours on the weekend writing. Maybe you can even send the kids to their grandparents house.
  • Simplify your life: Why are you so busy that you don’t have time to write? Perhaps you can let go of some things in order to have time to work on your writing project. Stop surfing the Web!
  • Passion: If you’re not passionate about what you’re writing, you won’t try very hard to find time to write. So find something to write about that you actually want to make time for.

For those writing a novel, there are some additional techniques you can implement to make the most of your writing time.

  • Initial synopsis: Make sure it’s detailed enough to divide into chapters when you begin writing your novel. In the synopsis, include a short description of the action for each scene or chapter. Include what is going to happen in each scene and why. If you don’t, you’ll spend a lot time trying to figure out what is supposed to be happening as you write.
  • Characters: To save time, base some of the characters on people you know really well. This approach makes it much easier to figure out what a character will do in a particular situation. You’ll spend less time pondering and contemplating. As an added bonus, your characters will also have more depth.
  • Style: Consider using a transparent writing style. A Baroque writing style, for example, is very time consuming.
  • Animate: Don’t spend time animating things that really don’t need to be animated. For example, you don’t need to spend time describing every room the characters walk into.
  • Chapter length: Write shorter chapters. Make the character with the most at stake in the scene the focal point. You can write the scene quicker with this approach because you’re involved with a character who wants something from the action.

Hopefully these tips will help you find some time to let your creative side loose!

Brian Jenkins, a writer for BrainTrack.com since 2008, contributes content about careers in journalism and other careers in the writing field.

Image from London Clock Company 

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