How can you write with the kids around? Part 3

my family b

How do you write when you have a family, job, and possibly even a life?
   Make sure you check out parts 1 and 2 first.

1. Communicate
In a good novel, you need dialogue.
Same in relationships.
My wife is so understanding when I tell her that I need one week of evenings so I can finish a section. But I have to make sure it’s a good week for her. And that it’s just one week. This works a lot better than just saying that I always need time.
She’ll need a lot of cuddle time afterwards.
I just have to remember to tell her about deadlines and personal goals so she can be prepared to live temporarily as a widow.

2. Learn how to use small increments of time
I hate writing when I only have five minutes. That’s not enough for me to get into the story.
But it’s plenty for editing. I always keep a printed copy of part of my story with me so I can edit it during the plethora of unforeseen events.
Also, keep a notebook so you can write down ideas. 

3. Mark where you left off

If you know where you continue next time, it’s much easier to get back into it.


5 thoughts on “How can you write with the kids around? Part 3

  1. Balancing family, a job and time to write can be a challenge.

    I started writing in 1968 soon after I left the Marines and went to college married and on the GI Bill. To find time to write, I usually got up at 3:00 AM and put in a few hours before going off to the my first college class in the morning. In the evenings and weekends I had a part time job to help supplement our income.

    Years later, as a full time English teacher (1975 – 2005) who often worked 60 – 100 hours weeks (mostly correcting student work and prepping new lessons), I still got up at 3:00 AM to write during those early, dark quiet hours (while the family slept), and over the decades managed to write several novels in addition to earning an MFA in writing and attending writing workshops on Saturdays (driving more than 130 miles round trip to get there) out of UCLA’s writing extension program.

    If you have the bug to write, you’ll find the time. For me, writing is my fun—what I enjoy doing almost more than sex. I don’t need a party or a theme park, booze or drugs. All I want is a blank page or screen to fill with words that lead to a climaxing conclusion hundreds of pages later.

    • Your life proves it. Hit and miss does not work. It has to be a single minded goal. And the simplest way to reach that is with habits. We only have a small amount of self discipline each day, but with strong habits in place it is easier to stick with them than to change.

      • I read some research that said it takes six months to a year to get rid of bad habits and about the same amount of time to imprint the habits that are replacing them—hopefully the new ones are good


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