Saturday, November 24, 2007

My Schedule Flies Out the Window

November and December are two difficult months to keep a regular schedule. The holidays are supposed to give us down time from work and responsibility so we can have more time to rest, reflect, and spend time with family. So why does it always feel like the opposite?

I try to keep a writing schedule where I write 1-2,000 words a day. Lately, I've been struggling with the process because I do have time eaters--email, blogging, critiquing manuscripts, website updates, etc. Yet, it seems like these things are necessary to build a web presence and to promote my name in the industry as I work toward publication. My biggest time eater is my full-time job that pays the bills. I try not to look at it this way, but that huge chunk of forty hours every week is hard to take as the years keep rolling by. Now add in the fact that my daughter has mono and the holidays are upon us, and I feel like my schedule is flying out the window.

Right now I'm trying to finish up one manuscript while I try to write a requested proposal for a new manuscript. Working on two writing projects at the same time is new for me. I don't view it as any different than trying to juggle several projects at work. The difference is, I love my writing projects. Yet, I'm trying to stay very conscious of my time with my daughter. She's craved more of my attention since she's been sick with this mono.

One day this week I spent some time with her and then got on the computer to work on my manuscript. She followed me into the computer room as she often does. "Mommy, don't get on the computer right now. Spend more time with me. We can watch a girlie movie together."

My response was, "Celina, we've already watched a family movie. It's time for me to work on my book."

"You can do that when I go to bed. Right now spend time with me." She pulled on my arm.

"Well, when am I supposed to sleep?"

She looked at me with wide green eyes through her little glasses and shrugged her shoulders. "I don't know, but I want you to spend time with me."

Once again my writing schedule flew out the window. When I was twenty-something I could handle being a little sleep deprived, but at thirty-something, my body feels the neglect. That scene had to wait another day. I finally hammered it out on my AlphaSmart on the road trip to my parents house for Thanksgiving.

Thank God for road trips and portable technology. It helps me reel my schedule back in where it belongs.


  1. Jenn, I think God's got you in training. He's preparing you for the day when you are a successful multi-published author with deadlines and appearances. You are learning to manage your time now so when you are able to devote those 40 hours a week to writing you won't have any problem fitting in the rest :-)

  2. Jenn,
    I think the schedule always flies out the window. I thought when my kids were little that when they grew up I would have so much free time. Ha! Not true.
    My youngest just turned twenty one and both of my children are in college. Neither live at home. I miss them much.
    I know you're enjoying your time with your little girl. It's hard to believe sometimes you'd go back and do it all again. But I think I would. I miss them.

  3. It tugged at my heart imagining your little girl trying to get you away from the computer. Mine has to do that sometimes too.

    I've begun to see that God will help me find the time to write. And on those days, I'm much more productive than I would've imagined.

  4. It's so hard to find time for your own dreams when you have so many responsibilities. I haven't quite figured out that one myself yet:-) I'm doing a lot of pondering this weekend on my schedule for the year and setting my priorities. My husband has looked at me several times as I stare out into space and asked what I was doing. It's been kind of funny. Each time my answer is that I've been thinking about the upcoming year. It's good to take time for those you love. And, it's good to make time for your writing-even in a car.