Stand-alones: Tips and Advice

Balancing Writing With Ordinary Responsibilities

Hey, reader, and welcome (back) to Writer Central!

If you are a writer who is still in school or works full-time, then you know how difficult it is to balance writing and regular responsibilities at the same time.  These days in school the teachers pile on more homework than is almost bearable, which makes getting any writing done almost impossible.  You can barely turn in your assignments on time, much less follow through with your own goals!

Then all the published authors are giving advice like, “Make writing a daily requirement!” and you have absolutely no time to do that.  You feel alone on this, but let me tell you: you’re not.  Most writers are busy people, and of course they all have lives outside of writing.  Everybody has responsibilities.  The tricky part is balancing those responsibilities with recreational activities.  This is what we are going to talk about today.

My first tip is to make a schedule for yourself.  This is much, much, much easier said than done, but I promise you that it helps!  If you know what you’re going to be doing at each hour, you will feel much more organized, and confident that you will succeed.  Find a spare hour to devote to writing.  I know, you have to write that history paper tonight, and it’s due tomorrow!

Schedule a time to do that, too.  From three thirty to five o’clock, do your history paper. Take a break. Then spend an hour writing, or even thirty minutes or less if you simply can’t spare that much time. You’re still making progress on your writing project, and getting everything else done that you need to get done.  Because if you want writing to become part of your career, then you have to spend time on it to improve and develop your skills.

I promise that it helps so much, and you will be so much more productive.

My second tip is to avoid procrastination.  I know, we’re writers, we all face procrastination.  But when you have multiple significant things to complete, procrastination is your enemy.  Keep the YouTube tab closed off, as well as Tumblr, Facebook, and any other form of social media.  These will draw your attention from your task at hand and waste time.  Because you’re such a busy person, you need every second of that time to be salvaged and put to a good cause.

I know this is difficult, but if you have a lot of homework and also need to do your daily writing, you can get your day sucked out of you.  It’s happened to me before, and nothing steals self esteem more than the feeling that you haven’t accomplished anything.  So it’s best to keep your laptop off and get your homework done immediately.  Do your daily writing, of course.  After that, spend the remainder of your day any way you like.

My last tip is not to stress.  Especially as a teen and young adult, life will be mean to you, it will dump all it’s got onto your head until you actually want to crawl into a hole and die.  You will feel like your life is way too crammed with everything you need to do, and everything is weighing down on you, trying to crush you.  You’ll feel like everything is against you, everything is your responsibility, everyone is depending on you. But everyone is not depending on you.

Let me tell you this one thing that I’m sure you’ve heard many times in your childhood: You are not the center of the universe.  (Scientifically you actually are, but not figuratively.)  The world is not depending on just you as a person, and your share of rough times will come to an end at some point.  So enjoy life and don’t stress about cramming everything in at once.  Take your time and calmly go on with your duties.

I guess that kind of contradicted everything I just said, but whatever.  I had to say it.

That’s all for this blog!  I hope this helped with balancing responsibilities and writing together.  Check back each Friday for new content. You can comment below or email me if you have a suggestion for another topic.

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