Monday 30 October 2023

Deciding When To Write - The Creative Process


I talked last week about deciding where to write (found here), and I thought that this week I would tackle the next big one and talk about finding that time to write. I've been someone who's written in the wee hours, the middle of the day, and into the dark hours too. I've had a schedule that means I can, mostly, fit writing in where I wish to, and go from there.

That said, I know that I am extremely lucky to have this as my only job. My writing is the only thing I have to focus on, and while, for full transparency, it doesn't pay me to write full time, it's something I have to be clear on because that obviously gives me a completely different experience to those who are doing writing on the side and/or have other big commitments.

But with that noted, I thought that I would give you some thoughts on how to make that decision about when the ideal time to write is. As I said last week, comfort is very much key to the where, and it also plays a part in the when!

I've been someone who has a very messed up sleep schedule. Some nights I'm in bed by 4pm and other nights it's slightly later. I will say that I've also, over my writing journey, slept in late, gotten up early and then napped and all of the things in between. If you're someone who's naturally a morning person, then this one seems obvious, choosing a time when you're at your best is key, and while it's not always possible to do so, you should stick as close to it as you can.

Like I do my writing, and other work, in the wee hours, because I'm awake, functioning and, usually, at my best. It allows me to really dig into the work and not have to worry about anyone interrupting me (bar the kitties) and really just lose myself in the words. So if you're someone who could do okay with rising an hour or half an hour earlier than usual, then yes this is an easier one from you.

Of course if you're not, then working late at night is an option for you, and all of those other options in between. The important thing to remember is that you need your sleep, especially for the things coming up in the second point, but if you can manage say one hour every evening three times a week, and you think it won't have a negative impact on you, then it's a good idea to go for that.


And now we get to the big one, the things that everyone has, but to varying degrees. When Mx. K was younger, mine was doing the school run. Like it didn't matter if I wanted to write early, I couldn't because they needed to be at school and all of that at a certain time and I was, in those days, not a morning person.

Like I mentioned above, I don't have a day job beyond writing, so for me it's easier to slot my work and writing into my time wherever I see fit. But that's not the case for a lot of people. People have work, they have commitments, they have a house to keep clean and chores to do. They can't just say that they'll write every day at this time, because life has a way of throwing up curveballs when you least expect it.

So my biggest suggestion has to be to try and work out an ideal time, that perfect day as it were, and keep as close to that as you're able without stressing yourself out, or dropping the ball when it comes to other life stuff, and I wish you the best of luck with it, because I remember how hard it was in those days when Mx. K was a lot younger.

So yeah, deciding when to write is a lot about carving out the time you have and making it work for you. It's good to be somewhat flexible but I also know that doesn't always happen, and sometimes your writing does go by the wayside and that's okay.

Any questions? Lemme know in the comments!

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