Three weeks ago, I wrote 2000 words of my novel in two hours.

I haven’t written anything since.

I keep getting stuck in the “finding time” to write pothole.

I come home with grand plans, sometimes even a timeline…and I get stuck in Facebook-land, or reading-whatever-book-I’m-reading-land, or television-land, or phone-call-land.

All the while, I KNOW this goes against everything I’ve learned about being a writer.

If you want to be a writer, you need to WRITE. Not just read about writing. Not just think about writing. But WRITE.

Just look at what other writers have said:

Don’t get it right, just get it written! ~ James Thurber

Planning to write is not writing. ~ E.L. Doctorow

The simpler you say it, the more eloquent it is. ~ August Wilson

Writing is like sex: you should do it, not talk about it. ~ Howard Ogden

If I waited until I felt like writing, I’d never write at all. ~ Anne Tyler

Much of writing might be described as mental pregnancy with successive difficult deliveries. ~ J.B. Priestly

Just write. ~Sandra Jensen

(Check out @AdvicetoWriters for more great writing quotes. Thanks Jon Winokur!)

What have you been meaning to do lately?

What have you said, “I’ll get to that in a minute or an hour or when I finish reading this chapter or watching this episode” to in the last few weeks?

How do we remedy these problems?

I’ve heard things like “schedule time into your day” and “make it a priority” and “get others to keep you accountable.” None of these seem to work too well for me. 

  • I may schedule time, but there is no one waiting somewhere for me to get things written, so it’s easy to psychologically ignore that scheduled block of time and substitute homework or dishes or even Facebook or solitaire.
  • Making writing a priority is easy to say….But when school happens, or friends that you don’t often see call you up and invite you to a rare social event, or your mom calls long-distance to update you on her life and the lives of every person you know in your hometown, putting writing first doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense. Or at least for me it doesn’t. Life comes first. Writing comes second.
  • And having friends keep me accountable… Well… they forget too. Or the ones I know I can rely on are on the other side of the continent and our main form of communication is Facebook messages. Again, they’re easy to ignore.

And I’m back where I was.

Stuck in a place where I want to write and be a writer but can’t seem to find or make time to actually write.  

How do you make writing a priority in your life?

  1. I've had all of these problems myself!! I had to discover this the hard way: The truth is, dear friend, that all of those are still excuses. If you want to write, its a simple matter of *deciding* to do it the moment it comes to your mind. Every time you go on Facebook or open up another game of Solitare, ask yourself : how many words could I be writing right now?The real question is this: Do you want to just talk about being a writer, or do you want to have something to show for it? ^_~How are you with deadlines? Have you tried setting one for your rough draft yet?

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