With a sick one at home today, I thought I’d bring up something I’ve seen bounced around the blogosphere these last few weeks. How do you find time to write in the midst of parenting?
While my two were at home (and I had stepped away from teaching the first time), I’d aim for three writing sessions a week. Anything extra was icing on the cake.
I didn’t worry about word count or even time. Sometimes those sessions would last ten minutes. Other times I could get a few hours in, especially during the years I had a babysitter for a weekly writing date. These sessions were doable for me during a life-phase when my time was often not my own.
How do you manage writing while mothering?
T. Anne says
It’s not easy! I have to blog in the morning, sneak a post in here and there during the day and do the bulk of my writing before bedtime that way everyone stays fed and feelings aren’t hurt, lol. But chores and down time are a great time for me to plot… 😉
I write while my 2-year-old naps and my 5-year-old is at kindergarten. My 4-year-old has quiet time (usually she watches a movie or colors on the floor by my desk). It’s the quietest time in my day. I’m not always super productive during this time but I try to be.
Heidi Willis says
I’m so sorry to hear your little one is sick! I just went through the same thing – today is my first day alone in two weeks!
Every year my schedule is different, so every year I have to readjust. This year I have hours when all three are at school, and that is heaven.
I used to do it at night when everyone was in bed. Now, I cart my notebook around in the car with me and write at swim lessons and choir practice and waiting in school parking lots.
And I sit at the counter with my kids when they are doing their homework and work along side of them. They like that because I’m in it with them, and I like it because it usually pretty quiet and I can’t goof off!
It is extremely painful for all parties!
I write in the evenings when everyone is fed, bathed, and tucked in bed. I also write on my hour lunch break. The weekends are the hardest for me to steal away.
Honestly I seldom try to write. I just do it. I just recently started a new writing project that’s more of a spiritual journal of sorts at 90 Days of Solitude. I do proof read and make sure it makes sense but when I play with it too much and spend too much time it loses whatever I was trying to convey in the first place. The 90 Days blog I literally post everyday except on weekends so I usually post within 15-20 minutes of started. Sometimes longer and almost always at night when my kids are asleep.
It’s hard – really impossible – to write with my sweet monsters running around.
Tabitha Bird says
this is a hard one. I write when my two year old naps and the six year old is at school. I usually get two hours in the middle of the day. The I write again in the evening when they are in bed. Again, usually another two hours. IfI have a hot project on the go I will get up early and write before they wake. But somedays life happens and all that goes to the wind. I have a VERY understanding and supportive husband too. That also helps me get in extra writing time.
All the best 🙂
Sharon Mayhew says
Luckily, I have a 13 year old. She never minds me writing, she’s my first reader and often my note taker when I’m driving. I have a friend with three kids, she gets up at 4 in the morning to write. She gets the kids of to school, walks the dog and then back to the keyboard or research. She amazes me. I typically start around 11, after the gym.
Best wishes to all of you with sick little ones. 🙂
I get my writing done when I commit to half an hour a day. It normally gets done when my youngest, who’s six, is in bed. The half an hour usually ends up being longer, but if I get that half an hour, then I’m happy. For me, it’s the consistency that’s the important thing. When I’m not consistent, sometimes I stop writing altogether.
Rosslyn Elliott says
Aargh. Good question. I definitely have to squeeze it in around the edges. I think I may have to start getting up at 5:00 am again!
PJ Hoover says
Bed time. I save the writing for when the kids are asleep.
Yaya' s Changing World says
I don’t have kids at home, anymore. Although I am only 4, my youngest is 30. Pretty good trick, don’tcha’ think? 🙂
When my four children were small, I usually made a special time for writing. In the beginning, it was of course, difficult because the oldest was 9 months old. As each new child came along, I continued writing every day, including all of them in ‘Writing Time.’
I have a ‘special writing tablet’ for each child. That was for their writing time. I had my own special supplies, as well, and when they were very good and helped me during writing time by working quietly on their own writing, I would let them use my ‘Special’ supplies. I always made sure that everyone got about the same opportunity in time to use my special supplies.
I started out with just fifteen minutes per day and worked up to two hours, daily.
Naturally, my little ones couldn’t write in the beginning, but I always praised their work at the end of our writing session.
Oh, another thing I made sure to do was start each session by reading to them for a few minutes while we cuddled. At the end of writing time, we read and cuddled again.
Now, some of my adult children also write and they are all artists with professional talents.
Did it help our relationship? You bet! I can’t imagine anyone being closer to their children.
I hope this information will help some of you to find a way to write and include your little ones. It is my firm belief that if you make it special to them, they will work with you. It won’t always go smoothly, but you will get a lot of writing time in that you might not otherwise have had. ~ Yaya