Make the Time

Relax. I’m not going to tell you to put down your phone. But I will say that time is one of the few things we really have. At our best, writers are decisive, clear, focused and at our worst we aren’t even close and this comes at our own peril.  Some days when we write, time might feel like this picture, and not in a good way.

I recently scheduled every single moment of my life for several weeks and executed accordingly. I have mixed feelings about this as a long-term practice. But what I observed was that I spent way too much time reacting to “urgent” impromptu things and, hello, everything takes time. It eats it. Also, since I work on several projects of varying complexities, each in different stages – there’s the time “cost” of preparing to do something, doing it, following up, and preparing the next step. There’s also the task of balancing and focusing my time so the tsunami of the shoulds and shiny things can’t splinter what I need to do.

So my challenge to you on this theme of make the time isn’t about making more time.  Having more time wasn’t helpful until I knew that what I was doing at that moment was exactly what I needed to be doing. What can you do to increase the quality of your writing time?  How can you give your writing the gift of unencumbered focus?

Image by James Barkman via flickr Creative Commons

This is Day 2 of 20 of BlogHer’s NaNoBloPo Challenge for February 2015.  This month’s challenge is “Make,” check out all of these posts here.



  1. Oh my friend…you really had me with the Shoulds and Shiny Things in your last post. I truly wonder what the psychology is behind the writer and her/his challenge to prioritize their craft. Is it guilt? Fear? Doubt? Laziness? Lack of follow through? I am an enormous offender of allowing the “shoulds” to scream at me and then give myself permission to feel guilt over spending the currency of time on something that may or may not (most likely not) evolve into something that I have to show for it. I felt compelled to write “most likely not” because that negative force constantly surfaces tapping me on the shoulder saying “is this really time well spent?” We all know what the truth is and the truth is yes, of course it’s time well spent. Even if we don’t get that article published or hit the New York Times Bestseller List, we have created, and creation is a vital part of who we are. It is a cathartic drug to the beast in us who needs to express…needs to be heard…needs to feel. As for the shiny things…well that’s a different monster altogether. Mine is sweet and harmless i’m pretty sure in the form of an 8 year old girl and she is never going to leave, because in truth…I really don’t want her to. This means that I need to be flexible and focused because we will need to live together…forever and happily ever after. And that my friend is admission and acceptance.

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