NOT writing

It’s the run-up to Christmas: secret santas are being arranged, Christmas parties abound (aside: if anyone knows what to wear to a Hawaiian-themed christmas party, please let me know!) and now there is tinsel around my work computer screen (see pic).

But what is not happening? Writing. At least not for me.

Of course, I think I can cut myself a little slack over the holidays. There are those aforementioned parties to attend, more family and friends dinners than ever, and the fact that we’re almost always working months (if not years) in advance in publishing, means that work is insane. We’re currently gearing up for what looks set to be one of our busiest spring/summers ever.

But all this is hardly new. Pretty much every author I know (except for the very massive or the very lucky) has to juggle a day job, family life and a social life with their writing. And surely to make this whole writing-a-book-in-a-year thing work, you have to find some time to write every day. I haven’t quite got into that routine yet, but whenever anyone hears that I am writing/have written a novel, the same question always comes up: how do you find the time?

For me, it’s not about finding but making — I’m a write-by-hand-first kind of writer, so I have my notebook with me at all times. That means I’m often scribbling on the tube, or at a coffee shop (I am indeed that cliché), or while standing in line at the supermarket check-out. I’ve even done a Peter V. Brett a few times and typed up chapters on the Notes app on my iPhone. But I also spend a lot of time just sort of staring out into space, which probably doesn’t look all that productive but I consider it a necessary part of the creative process!

Does anyone else have any tips for juggling writing with the rest of life?

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