Months and months ago I was only writing when I had time. But the truth is, I had plenty of time. I just wasn’t using it to write. At all.
I come across this excuse way too much. Writers who don’t write, that say they don’t have time. Or someone who wants to write, or intends to write, but doesn’t. I hear this “excuse” over and over again. It’s an easy one — Who’s to say you’re not busy?!
What you have decide is what’s important to YOU? If writing is something you really want to do, if it’s something you really care about, you’ll make the time to do so. That’s just plain and simple. But if watching the latest episode of Dexter is something that’s more important, then that’s your choice. But don’t say you don’t have time. That’s not true. Instead be honest and say ” Yeah I have time, but I just don’t feel like using it” — That’s better.
This is coming from someone who’s a part time student, taking three classes. Working 30 plus hours a week. And still finds the time to write for at least 5 hours a day. Sure some days are better than others, but I always make the time. How do I do it? It’s simple math really. And with regimented schedule you can do it too.
Months and months ago, like I said I wasn’t taking advantage of this free time I didn’t know I had. I found other things to do, even know writing and becoming a better writer was my top priority.
So I sat down one day and broke my week down. I first had to identify where my time was going…
NOTE: This is different for everyone, I always rounded up and gave room for variables.
24 hours in day. 168 hours in a week.
Average person sleeps 8 hours. As a writer, that becomes much less. But for sake of this, I’ll say 8 hours a day.
168hrs – 56hrs of sleeping a week = 112 hours remaining.
Eat 3 hours a day. At least. Shower 1 hour a day ( rounded up). Other priorities- 2 hours a day (rounded up). So that’s 42 hours a week spent on showering, eating, and other misc chores. Now if you have kids, pets, and/or a needy girlfriend this could be much more. Learn how to sacrifice.
112hrs – 42hrs = 70 hours remaining.
I work 30 hours a week at least. Most people work more. Some work less.
70hrs – 30hrs = 40 hours remaining
I have school. Three classes, I spend about 5 hours per class a week. That includes homework. This may double depending on your time you want to put in. Again you have to ask yourself what’s more important to you? I put writing before everything. So I see that 5 hours a week for each class is enough.
40hrs – 15hrs = 25 hours remaining
25 hours I have remaining each week, after everything. It doesn’t seem like a lot, but when you brake it down…
25hrs divided by 7hrs = 3.5 hours a day. This is time when you could write. That’s plenty of time to start your new screenplay. New novel. Or work out and loose those extra pounds. Again, what’s more important?
You make the time to do things that you care about. If it’s something you really want to fight for, you’ll do it. Otherwise, focus your energy on what you think you should. But don’t say you don’t have time. Because if you wanted it soooo bad….then you’d be doing it. You’d make it happen.
This process has many variables of course. But breaking down your time can really give you an outlook on how much of it you really waist. I try to fit some time in for just relaxing. Often it doesn’t happen. But the satisfaction I get from accomplishing what I set out to do, each week and each day, is much more satisfying than “relaxing”. This process also involves sacrificing. Set your priorities. Decide how much time you’ll put in. Brake it down, see what’s left. Now utilize it!
Hope it works as well as it did for me.