IWSG - Making Time



Will I ever finish?

I’ve been working on the first draft of my current manuscript for about two months now, and at the start, I wanted to finish the draft by the end of the summer. Well, the end of summer is approaching, and I’m not even a third of the way done.

It’s that I don’t have time to write. Well, maybe I don’t, what with working full time, blogging about an hour a day practically, reading (my favourite thing to do) as often as I desire—which is as often as I can—spending time with friends whenever our schedules match up, exercising, and sleeping with whatever time I have left. I know that I must MAKE TIME to write, and I’ve tried super hard to do that, but whenever I sit at my desk with an open hour or two devoted to writing, I usually end up staring at the blank page for a few minutes in awe and fear then open the internet browser or a book instead.

It’s a fear of failure, and I know it. You can’t fail if you never try. I’ve been spending all my time working and networking and building a life and a future for myself, and meanwhile my third-of-the-way-written manuscript is sitting there in its computer file growing awfully lonely. Writing is my passion, but I have other passions too. It just seems like those less important to me (but more important to my well-being) tasks are taking up most of my time and leaving me with clutter in my brain, and therefore an empty page.

Phew, just wait until my college classes start up again in the fall.

Is anyone else dealing with a similar problem? How do you make time to write?

Peace, Aimee

15 comments:

  1. Maybe instead of looking at a blank screen, you should have some notes in front of you so you know where to go. I'm sure you spend time thinking about where your story should go next. So write things down as they occur to you, keep a list of these things, as well as character traits and backstory. Arrange them into an outline of sorts, then use it as a roadmap to guide your story. Even just writing a synopsis helps. Then expand that synopsis into chapters with mini-synopses. It doesn't have to be completely plotted out. You can still write by the seat of your pants if that's how you like to do things, but this way, you'll have a small plan, know where you want to go next, at least, and won't be stumped once you sit down at your computer.

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  2. I have the exact same problem. I'm starting up sixth form in September, so I'm in the same boat all the way. I found this really good post: http://thisblogisaploy.blogspot.co.uk/2011/06/how-i-went-from-writing-2000-words-day.html
    It has actually helped me write more than I've ever written before.

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  3. It is hard - fitting everything in, I know. But I agree with your first commenter that if you have a road map of where you want to go it will be much easier to face that screen. I always find that the first few words of the day are the hardest and then I seem to get into my flow.

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  4. I do find fitting everything in hard and sometimes life just doesn't give you must time to find. I find setting myself goals helps me, because suddenly I can't bear not to reach my goal and I am finding five minutes here and there. At the weekend I strongly shut down Google Chrome and that helped, LOL, if I have twitter open that's a big distraction for me. Good luck finding the time.

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  5. I've been there! My advice? don't kill yourself over it. Open the document at least once a day, read the last two or three paragraphs you wrote to remember where you are then write whatever come to mind for the next ten minutes. You may only get 300 words that day, but at least the focus is there.

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  6. Forget anyone will ever read it and just get the words down. You can always clean it up on the first draft. I tend to write an extended outline for the first draft, especially when on deadline with a publisher. Actually, when I'm really under the gun. I plot the story with chapter headings, whose POV, what the goal, motivation, conflict, and ending hook is for each chapter. Then I write the extended outline draft. It works for me, but you'll find your rhythm soon enough. I can't wait for you to post that you finished your first draft. It's so exciting!! Keep writing, you'll get there.

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  7. It is hard to make time, but in the end, it's worth it. There's a quote (don't know who said it) but to paraphrase, it said something like "I don't enjoy writing, but I love having written." Very true!

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  8. I'm with Ciara - write something completely silly and ridiculous for fun. Go for something totally outside your comfort zone that you're sure you'll never show to anyone. that might get you back in the mood. Good luck!! :)

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  9. Hi :)

    Just stopping by from the IWSG.

    I've visited about 30 blogs today who are part of the group and everyone seems to be talking about time, and making time to write.

    The thing that helps me is doing a prompt a day and then setting myself a "to do list" at the beginning of each week. I put it on my blog so that it's public, then the following week, do an update. It's great to get encouragement from my followers :)

    Good luck honey xx

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  10. Hahha, it really is funny how similar our situation is :D I'm also starting college again in September and wanted to have my first draft done but am nowhere near. I spend so much time blogging, networking, etc. yet am neglecting the most important part, doing the work! I'm considering going on a blogging/Internet hiatus next month so I bunker down and actually get something done.

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  12. Yes, yes, and YES! Finding/making time to write is theee biggest problem I have! I've been working on my first draft for six months, with no end in sight. My wife and I had our 2nd daughter in June and I'm about 80% sure I have adult ADD so the only way for me to really concentrate on writing is to run off to the library or somehow stay awake longer than everyone else... which leads to insomnia and/or a rough day to follow.

    Maybe when the kids are in school I'll get this done. I finished my screenplay at work so why not?

    Good luck with your classes and writing time. If you're committed enough (and you're able to write in short bursts) you'll find a way to fit it in :)

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  13. I'm not crazy about my day job, but I spend a lot of time in airports and hotels, so I write to escape my surroundings. One word at a time and you'll get there.

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