Wow, I'm up again on the blog chain. This time, Mandy picked the topic, and a fitting one it is too:
How do you prioritize? How do you balance paying attention to your writing, critiquing for friends, spending time with your family and earning a living?
These days, it seems everyone has too much to do, even if you're a Disney character:
Imagine what it would be like if these guys were parents!
As a working mother, I know it's impossible to keep all aspects of your life perfectly balanced. Some days your child gets sick and you have to leave work early; some times you have to go on a business trip and leave your family. And what with a job to do, a family to look after, and a house to clean, plus a mole (that's 6.02 x 10 to the twenty-third power) of other things demanding your attentions, at times I feel like I and my writing vie for last place.
Here are a couple of tips I follow to make my writing a higher priority:
Set aside time for your writing. I find the best time for this is on my lunch hour at work. Of course, sometimes I have to run errands or choose to do something else, such as blog or play Spider Solitare. But this is the best time I have to focus on my novel. On the weekends, I claim Alex's nap time as my own.
Put your writing first above critting. I hate to say this, because I do enjoy helping others, and it helps you as much as the other person. I used to be quite active on the Online Writing Workshop for Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror, but although I'm still a member, I haven't been to the site in months. I do occasional crits for my friends, but these days my time is so limited I have to focus on my work. I've had to ignore some requests from strangers.
Don't forget what really matters. For me, that means my family. My son has a very late bedtime for a toddler; lately it takes him until almost 10:00 p.m. to go to sleep. It's frustrating because I still have housework and other paperwork to take care of, so I seldom get any writing done at night anymore. But I remind myself Alex will probably be our only child, so I should cherish the time we spend together with him sitting in my lap while I read to him.
That's all I have for now, and I have to get back to writing. Go check out Eric's blog to see his response to this topic!