I tell people I’ve been writing seriously for about ten, eleven years now. I thought I was writing seriously all those years. Granted it was a step up from hobby writing, so in that sense yes I was serious, but I’m on a whole new level of serious. Publication Serious. Getting up at 4:30 in the morning serious. I’m there.
I even have a typical schedule, created based on which activities I perform better at various times. All of this is subject to deadlines (like now, I’ve got two major short story deadliens, so ever writing session is spent working on those two stories) and also subject to family needs. My kids are too young for me to say “no this is my time”. But I plan the writing to fit into times where they aren’t around, or when they’re sleeping, or when someone can watch one or both of them for me.
My day-job dictates that Monday through Friday I work from 6;30 am to 3:00 pm, and my household responsibilites run me ragged Saturday and Sunday. Working around that:
Morning Writing: 4:30 – 5:30 Mon – Fri (novel writing / other first draft writing)
Lunch Time Writing: Tues, Thurs, and when possible Sat/Sun – short story work.
After Work: 3:45 – 4;45 (4x weekly) @ the library near daycare for (novel) revision
Evening Writing: 8:30 – 10:00 pm (5x weekly)- “Other” = Reading, Revision, “Developement” (plan, outline, analyze for revision), Submission prep, critiques, or whatever pressing deadline needs more time.
I guess that between the kids, work issues, weather related road delays, I tend to lose about a quarter of what I planned on doing during the day. The Evening Session will help me make up for those days, hopefully.
This schedule should theoretically allow me to accomplish the following in a year: write one novel, edit one novel, and fit in several short stories. I’ll know better after this year, but I’m hoping that spending more time writing means revision will go faster than I’ve done them in the past. We’ll see.
D, this is an amazing schedule. I had committed to one half-hour writing session per day, and I failed after four days. I admire your dedication, and I can't wait to read your novel (and all the short stories in between)!
It took ten years of those half hour sessions (many of them failed) to reach this point. Just do what YOU can do. Like I said, a quarter of what I plan doesn't happen for whatever reason. Just get back up as soon as you can and keep going. Don't waste time looking back – it takes away from the writing. 🙂 Good luck with the half hours!