Some of my friends are amazed by how quickly I manage to write books. Many of them are used to the idea, that a writer is someone who spends a year or five writing a book. Perhaps they imagine that writers write a sentence here and a word there, only when "the muse" allows it. Some might have that kind of writing process, but I'm different. I write fast, set strict goals and deadlines, but it doesn't kill my flow or affect my creativity. I sit down and write whenever I have time. There are some writers who are even faster than I am, but I do write with my second language and not with my native one.
But like most writers who work full-time, I struggle with finding the time to write. But I get words down pretty easily. I must say, that I write sloppy first drafts. I want to get the words down as quickly as I can and then edit later.
Here’s my normal day:
06.00 Wake up! Drink smoothie and coffee.
06.30 Wake up the youngest one. Get him ready for pre-school. Make sure the older kid knows what she needs to do. (It's raining today - take an umbrella!)
07.00 Get the youngest one to pre-school, listen to audiobooks or podcasts on the way
8.00-16.00 At work. At lunch hour, write the newsletter/blog/check social media
17-19.00 House chores, grocery shopping, spending time with kids
20.00 Put kids go to sleep
20-23 Book business -time
I’ve started to call my writing time as Book Business -time. Because that’s what it is. It’s not just writing. It’s also marketing, planning, cover-creation, text formatting, seeking editors and beta-readers, contributing to give back to Writing Community on Twitter or FB (you know: you help me and I help you). I call it a business because I think of my writing as a career or like a second job I have.
But in spite of everything going on in my life, I have written three full-sized novels in two years. I also have two others nearly finished.
"It's not easy, but do you want to know how I do it? When everyone else is partying, I’m at home, writing."
It’s not easy, but do you want to know how I do it? When everyone else is partying I’m at home, writing. When others are at the gym, eating out with friends, watching TV, gaming… I’m writing. My writing takes time away from other things in my life: house chores, friendships, and exercise, but I choose writing over everything. I choose it especially when I have WIP on its way... which is pretty much all the time.I do try to have free time as well. I sing in a choir, spend time with my kids, and occasionally meet some of my friends too, but I’m pretty strict when it comes to my writing time. Evenings are for my books. Sometimes I get to have a weekend or at least one whole day for my writing, and that’s when I easily write 4000-7000 words in one day.My average first-draft writing speed is about 1000-1200 words in half an hour. When any of my WIP’s are in that first-draft -stage, I write at least half an hour every night. That gives me at least 7000 words in a week. Usually, I write more than half an hour when I get started.
Right now it's my lunchtime, and I'm drafting this blog post. I optimize my time!
But yeah, that's how I get everything done. How do you reach your goals?