I’m joining in with the online discussion group that Kate Motaung is hosting on her blog Heading Home, based on the book On Being a Writer: 12 Simple Habits for a Writing Life that Lasts, by Ann Krocker & Charity Singleton Craig. The second chapter is about arranging our time and space to make room for writing.
About nine weeks ago, I decided it was time to get serious about my writing. So I tried to set up a weekly schedule that would include three afternoons a week for writing. What has happened since then reminds me of when I’m working on a jigsaw puzzle, trying to fit in a puzzle piece that looks exactly like it fits where I’m trying to put it, but it doesn’t. In frustration, I try to put it in other places that look like possibilities, until I finally give up on placing that piece and pick up another piece and start the same process with it
To help you understand why this is what happens when I try to follow a specific schedule, let me tell you a little about myself. I am a woman who suffers with a long list of chronic illnesses, which currently are causing weakness and weariness that often require me to I spend part my daytime hours in bed resting. I don’t work outside the home, but my husband has a Christian video production business and Ihandle his bookkeeping. I also have an adult son with special-needs, who receives in-home nursing care, so this is a busy house. And recently, I’ve had to spend a lot of time working out some problems concerning my son’s medical equipment and supplies. So I have more than enough to keep me busy without writing. Yet I’ve sensed the Lord Jesus telling me that I needed to make time for writing.
Since I made the decision to spend time every week writing, I’ve come up with a different kind of plan that is working for me. When I get up in the morning, I start by spending time in God’s Word and prayer. Then I ask the Lord to give me His assignment (or assignments) for the day. Some days, God brings to mind that our business records need to be brought up to date. Others, I sense He wants me to focus on household tasks. Some days He says, “it’s time to write.” And other days He’ll show me a couple small tasks to do and say when they’re done I need to rest. This may not work for everyone, but for me it has helped me to catch up on my many-faceted responsibilities (which I had fallen way behind on when trying to stick to a schedule) and write at least one blog post per week. And I’ve done so while going to numerous doctors appointments and taking time to rest when that’s really what I need to be doing. This may not be the answer for anyone else in this group, but it’s working for me.
The arrangement of my space is also probably different than most of the rest of the ladies in this group. Because of the problems with my neck and back, I am not able to spend long periods sitting at a desk or table using my laptop. So I do most of my writing on my iPad, using the WordPress app. And I work sitting in my recliner, with a shelf next to me holding materials I might need. I do have a laptop, which I occasionally use, but most of my writing is done on the iPad.