Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Finding the Time to Write by Lacy Williams


I started writing seriously (aiming toward publication) almost six years ago. At that time, my biggest challenge was learning the craft to get my stories in shape to be published. Then my challenge became finding time to write around a full-time work schedule (and still fit my husband in there somewhere too!).

Now my biggest challenge is writing books with two small children in the house. I have a two-year-old daughter and eight month old son, and right now I think I work harder now than I ever did in the corporate world! My days are busy with potty training, feeding both of them, and somewhat trying to keep the house clean.

So my usual writing time is relegated to naptime (if I can get them both down at the same time—some days I can’t!), and after bedtime. That means my writing time is limited to about 2 hours a day. Here’s how I’m coping with this significant challenge:
  • Turn off email, TV and all other distractions when I have my writing time. I need to do this to take advantage of all the brainpower I can and not be distracted. (Thank goodness for DVR!! I’m addicted to CASTLE.)
  • Know where I’m going. I am a halfway seat-of-the-pants writer, but for me to get in a good word count of quality writing, it is important that I have the next couple of scenes thought out or a rough draft of them scribbled on a piece of paper. So that way when I actually get to sit down and write I can write quickly because I have a plan of where the story is going.
  • Think about my story when I’m not writing. See the above tip about having scenes in mind for when I sit down to write. When I can, I think about my characters, story, etc. when I’m doing something mindless like folding the laundry. Or I get a lot of inspiration in the shower. Used to get a lot while driving but not now that I have a chattery two year old. :)
  • Prioritize. This was essential when I was working under my last deadline. It meant I couldn’t work on marketing stuff or check email or other important projects and I even had to put aside a few times of going out with friends or dinner with family to get the book done. But it did get done on time.

These are my tips for writing with small children. I’m sure they’ll change as the kids get bigger. I feel like my writing has been something that morphs into whatever time I can take for it—but it is important to me and I have never been able to stop, which some people says is a sign of a true writer.

Lacy Williams is a wife and mom from Oklahoma. Her debut novel, MARRYING MISS MARSHAL, won ACFW's Genesis award before being published. She promises readers happily-ever-afters guaranteed.

Lacy combines her love of dogs with her passion for literacy by volunteering with her therapy dog Mr. Bingley in a local Kids Reading to Dogs program.

Lacy loves to hear from readers. She posts short stories and giveaways at her website http://www.lacywilliams.net and can be found on social media at http://www.facebook.com/lacywilliamsbooks and www.twitter.com/lacy_williams.

Be sure to check out her special promotion with freebies and giveaways all through the month of May. Check it out at www.megamaybirthdaybash.com.

About THE HOMESTEADER'S SWEETHEART
To escape a dreaded arranged marriage, Penny Castlerock will face anything—even life on her grandfather's farm. But it isn't the rustic lifestyle that's got the Philadelphia socialite tied in knots. It's the handsome homesteader and his eight adopted children next door….

With seven boys and a girl to raise, transplanted farmer Jonas White could sure use some help. He just didn't expect it to come from the high-spirited, copper-haired beauty he's always admired from afar. But surely working the land is no life for a woman like Penny. Yet a threat to Jonas's farm just might show him how perfect Penny is for him after all.

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