When I worked full time it was a struggle to find the time to write. I dreamed of the time that I’d one day be working part time so that I could devote more of my time to writing and to honing my writing skills. Well, that time has arrived and you know what? Doesn’t make a bit of difference with divvying out my schedule and making sure I have sufficient time to write.
If anything, I’m busier than ever. It was decided upon my latest return to work that I’d go part-time and supplement the rest of my income through disability … something I was totally game with. I’ve worked with this law firm for nearly 25 years. I guess you could say I have a certain entitlement to finally taking it easy, particularly given my health issues. What I’m finding is an expectation of accomplishing 40 hours of work in a 24+ hour week. The inability of this is something I really have to make clear to bossman. But that’s beside the point.
I now have before me, two full days available during which I have the freedom of doing nothing but write. At least until 3:00, at which time I pick up the darlin’ daughter from school and start thinking about dinner preparations. Do I take advantage of this blissful free time? So far? … hell no. There is always something that needs to be done. Cleaning … or at the very least … straightening the house, errands to run, groceries to be bought, various health problems going on with my elderly mother, a handicapped sister and an older brother who just had a stroke a few weeks ago. Granted, with the last three issues, I have the help of siblings, so its not a task that I’m shouldering on my own.
I have the feeling that a lot of full time authors are faced with this transition. Plus, I have the feeling that this is a mindset that I have to train myself into. The actual permission that I can give myself to set a certain number of hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays during which I can do nothing but write. Managed to do this for about two hours last Tuesday and I have to admit, it felt pretty good. I also discovered that there was a certain amount of guilt because this was time that I could have used to do one of those many chores that always seem to loom over my head.
So, this is a question for all of you authors who write full (or part) time. How did you manage to make the transition from working a day job full time to writing full time? Both are difficult. However, with the day job, you have a set number of hours that you’re required to use to accomplish whatever task or line of employment that you’re in. With writing from home (or wherever you set up shop) you pretty much have only yourself to be accountable for. How do you do it?