Wednesday, March 4, 2020

8 Tips to Help Balance Mothering and Writing by Denise Weimer

Are you one of those people who needs uninterrupted quiet to put words on a page? *Hand waving.* I confess. I am.

During my “stay home mom” days when my daughters toddled from one creative mess to another, writing time proved discouragingly elusive. Although the girls are now high school and college age, I still write and edit from home—from my kitchen island, of all places—and to my surprise, young adult schedules can be just as interruptive as toddler schedules. And I still struggle to find blocks of time when they’re gone and my husband is working. Honestly, it’s as though my house has a revolving door. But … I now serve as a managing editor and have been blessed to see more than a dozen titles traditionally published.

So how do young moms make progress along that rocky road to publication? I found a few particular tips helpful back in the day.

1. Be willing to take a hiatus. This is probably not the first tip you want to hear. My drive to write was so intense when I was in my twenties that God literally had to take it away for a season. And I had to surrender to that season. Listen carefully. Is He knocking on your heart?

2. Nap time. After the hiatus, a novella took shape as my two-year-old snoozed. I started with a small, manageable project set locally for ease of research and promotion … but Redeeming Grace became the stepping stone for my next series.

3. Mother’s Morning Out. Many churches or organizations will offer you an escape. Other moms may use it for shopping or socializing. You may need solitary confinement.

4. Relatives or a babysitter. Don’t let the misperception that your writing is not “real work” stop you from asking for a day a week to concentrate. It will only become “real work” if you give yourself permission to have a “real job” and the confidence that God gave you a talent worth using.

5. Join a writers’ group and/or attend a writers’ conference. A great way to educate yourself and stay connected with like-minded individuals while your work is in progress.

6. Task prioritizing. The most excellent advice I ever read as a young mom/writer was to save housework and chores for times the kids are around, and write when they aren’t. Use the everyday tasks for chatting and teaching, but give yourself the gift of writing while they’re in school or elsewhere.

7. Foster appreciation for your work. Let your kids into your work world by reading age-appropriate snippets of your writing to them, giving talks at their schools, and having elementary school-age and older children accompany you to book signings. Kids can be great helpers handing out business cards and bookmarks! What an icebreaker.

8. Let the law of demand guide your schedule. Put writing and book events secondary to family events. As long as you’re usually “just mom” to your kids, they’ll appreciate the days you need to morph into “mom the writer.”



What guidelines do you find helpful in balancing mothering and writing? 


Tips to help young moms "progress along that rocky road to publication". via @denise_weimer #SeriouslyWrite #amwriting


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Denise Weimer writes historical and contemporary romance and romantic suspense set in her home state of Georgia. She’s authored over ten published novels—including her March releases, Spring Splash (https://www.amazon.com/Spring-Splash-Denise-Weimer-ebook/dp/B0845LXMHP/) and Traces (https://www.amazon.com/Traces-Denise-Weimer-ebook/dp/B0845SJZCQ/)—and a number of novellas. As a managing editor for the historical imprints of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, she also helps others reach their publishing dreams. 

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4 comments:

  1. My daughter took looonng naps, so I had two-three hours of uninterrupted time. Still, I didn't start writing full-time until she was in her latter years of high school.

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  2. Those naps can be a huge blessing for everyone! It sounds as if our journeys were similar, Sandra. - Denise

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  3. I used to be able to write with all kind of noise around me. No longer! Now I need QUIET! Maybe that's a sign of getting older. LOL!

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  4. I guess I've always been older in my head, then. I'm getting better with distractions over time but still need quiet to "Seriously Write." Haha!

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