Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Boundaries—AKA Establishing Time and Space to Write Effectively

If you want to be a writer, there’s no getting away from the fact that you have to write. And to write, you need time and space to create and complete your project.

People often don’t understand when a writer in their life chooses to sit by themselves and tap out a story on their computer instead of ____________. You fill in the blank: watch a movie, meet for coffee go for a walk, go out to dinner, play a board game, etc.

Remember the excitement you felt when you first decided to test the waters and become a writer? Remember the sparkling possibilities that dazzled your vision like shiny stars in a dark sky? It seemed so exciting. The thrill of completing that great novel or other writing project was the dream in your heart. Hold on to that dream.

The hard truth is that when you choose to become a writer you must count the cost of that decision. If you’re going to spend time writing, then you won’t have space to do lots of other stuff that used to occupy your day. There’s the price to pay for your decision, and it is calculated in time away from people you care about and hobbies you may enjoy. But if you’re sincere about your call to write, you’ll suck it up and get the work done.

Don’t lose sight of your writing goal. Diana Scharf Hunt, author and time-management guru says, “Goals are dreams with deadlines.” If you don’t keep your eye on the prize (a completed manuscript or articles or blog posts), then you won’t maintain the necessary motivation. Most writers will tell you that it’s much more satisfying to have written a book than to be writing a book. It’s work. Period. But it’s doable!

What do you sacrifice in order to find time to write?

*Check back in on Tuesday for some practical advice on guarding your time to ensure productivity. 

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