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Writing Wednesdays: Stealing Time

I have immense respect for the authors who have full time jobs, families and then a writing life.

I’ve been more of a free-and-easy writer, because freelancing lets you choose your options and timings, and I have an uber-supportive family when it comes to my writing.

But the last few weeks have been challenging, because of a combination of events—to sneak time out of life for writing has become not only a challenge but a sort of artistic achievement in itself!

I write in the time it takes the pasta to boil, or the aquarium to drain, or the vegetables to steam. I wake-sleep-wake early in the morning to dream up my stories, I write in my head when I hit the shower, I write in parallel in my thoughts as I cook.

What are the tricks you use to write when life simply WILL NOT allow you the time and the energy ?

“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” 
— Stephen King

Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her literary crime thriller series, the Blue Mumbai, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency. Both The Blue Bar and The Blue Monsoon were published in 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • I think one thing that really drains us is that we are never really done. there's always stories to revise, social networking to do, blog formats to improve on, new ideas to form.

    I think for me, making lists help when I'm short on time. Crossing things off gives me satisfaction and makes me want to be even more productive to see just how much I can accomplish. 🙂

    Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

  • I think you've got the right idea. It's about making time, and squeezing in time to write, especially if you have a full time job. Let's face it, when you get published you'll be under contract to produce.You'll HAVE to find time to write, better to start now and get the practice in.

  • Damyanti says:

    Lynda, I do that too 🙂

    Anne, that's where I do most of my reading nowadays.

    Stephen, welcome to my blog. I think you've been to Daily (w)rite, my other blog. Yes, words all through the day add up, don't they?

    Suze, I so agree with you. I don't write for a while, every once in a while,a nd always come back with more to write than before.

    Rachel, I think we writers do a lot of our writing in our heads. Happy to find a kindred spirit!

    Elizabeth, Thankyou!

    Dafeenah, thanks for taking the time out to comment here…I get exactly what you mean.

    Madeleine, hope you feel better soon, and get back all your creative energies!

  • Madeleine says:

    Great post. Grab that writing time. Since I've been ill I've certainly been reading lots, though writing creatively has been difficult, I managed to keep up blogging, which seems to require less brain power LOL! The meds have helped and I can feel my creativity returning :O)

  • Dafeenah says:

    If you find the answer, please let me know. I am still working on this balance. The only reason I can maintain my blog is because I can schedule posts in advance otherwise I don't think I could manage even that little amount of time.

  • When worse comes to worse, and I require absolute silence when I am composing a book, I stay up after the kids have gone to bed. I also have what's called "quiet time". The kids play quietly in their rooms under an hour timed limit while I write away.

    I wish you the best!

    Can Alex save Winter from the darkness that hunts her?
    YA Paranormal Romance Darkspell coming fall of 2011!


  • Ooh I also "write" while I'm in the shower! And while I'm driving (which can be dangerous…) and pretty much during ANY activity that doesn't require me to think about something else!
    Then the problem is remembering all the bits I "wrote" in my head…

  • Suze says:

    The writing cycle includes not writing. Writers are afraid of that but it is a natural part of the rhythm and it does not mean that you have stopped. It means that this number is a slow dance. Some of the most inspiring moments come out of dimming the lights.

  • Hi Damyanti, first time vistior. Sometimes its just a few minutes here, a few minutes there. They add up at the end of the day and I can at least knock a few pages out. I also stay up late, get up early, and nap in the middle of the day.

  • The bathroom. It's the only place no one will bother me and I can get 15 minutes to myself without feeling guilty.

  • When life gets busy I try to keep notebooks close to hand so I can throw a few thoughts down when they come to me.