I’ve been back to school for 10 days now (okay technically as I write this it’s 4 days till Christmas, but still). As I think back over the past couple semesters working on my second degree, I’ve had to learn how to balance school/work life with my writing life. I published Adelyn’s Amazing Adventures in October of 2020 (first semester of second degree) and I quickly realized I didn’t have as much time to work on my book as I did over the summer. Last semester (Fall 2021) was even harder!! I made sure I finished the first draft of A Royal Mind BEFORE the semester started and I’m so glad I did. If I hadn’t, I don’t think I would have been able to publish it a couple weeks ago.
I didn’t want to give up or push my writing to the side, just for my degree. However, I also knew I couldn’t spend so much time on my manuscript and forget to my assignments finished. I also knew that one day I’m going to be an English teacher, and I’ll be encouraging my students to find time to write for fun while still in school with homework and extra curriculars. I didn’t want to be a hypocrite.
So- how did I do it?
I honestly don’t know.
I just figured it out.
Here’s my tips for you:
- Set aside time. Sometimes we know that there’s a certain time every day that we don’t have anything to do- or that we can make our free time. I learned that mine was best during lunch on some days and other days I’d type away waiting on classes to start (in person and online).
- Set a timer. Maybe you only have 15 minutes, and you can’t go past that. Use your phone timer and make yourself stop when it goes off. It may not always feel like much but it’s better than nothing.
- Write right before bed. There have been things like reading, exercises, etc. that I’ve learned to make a part of my nightly routine. Writing might be something you can only give time to at night after everything else is done. Again, set yourself a timer so you don’t get to lost and stay up and lose sleep. Make writing a part of your nightly routine!