I wrote something similar to this not so long ago but because it’s Nanowrimo — national noveling month — this felt especially important to talk about today.

I know a little about this subject, working two jobs, an internship and querying my first novel this year along with climbing regularly as a hobby and doing a little volunteer work on the side. You could perhaps say I am an expert on this subject.

The first thing to remember when you’re thinking to yourself that you have no free time is that nobody does. We all have banks we’re supposed to go do things in, washing to do, cleaning we said we’d do yesterday, emails still needing to be answered, and friends who never see us because we are never free. We all have literally no free time. This is called being a writer.

Once you accept that you will have no free time — simply time when you are heinously guilty of not doing other time sensitive things and instead are, I don’t know, outside running in a field or inside playing games with a pal — from now until forever you’re well on your way to finding time to write!

When we envision writing in our heads we all have this idea place and setting and feeling we want to create. Reality for most writers is a little different. Sure, sometimes I make it to my desk and have a lovely writing session. Other times I don’t but I still get the words down. Here’s how you have to think about it: write in every spare moment you have — and you do have those.

If dinner take a certain time in an oven, and you’re standing stirring a pot near it, pause every now and then and write.  If you take the train, or bus, or even get a lift to work or school. Write. If you get lunch breaks. Write. Consider writing five minutes every day before bed. Just five.  Some people even write in the shower. There are waterproof notebooks and pens you can buy online. Some people write on the treadmill (although omg idk if this one is for me).

Not every method of squeezing out words will be for you but the key here, imho, is to try. Try writing whenever you can. Writing apps can be fantastic if you have a little time, maybe just a minute, while you wait for something on a computer to load. Pocket sized notebooks are fantastic too.

It’s also important to prioritise. Sometimes the laundry can wait a little while longer. Some days maybe you’ll miss out on having breakfast (don’t do this one this it not recommended this is just what happens to me accidentally because I’m a fool) but Nanowrimo isn’t forever and it isn’t the end of the world if you don’t finish in time. What matters is that you are trying.


  • Habits of Highly Effective Writers - Literary Jam & Toast

    […] Some people get up at 5am and write then (I mention these people b/c they seem like superheroes to me and I just cannot get over it), if you’re like me maybe you’ll settle into writing when you wake up, sometimes at lunch, and then in the evenings. Perhaps you have a long commute on public transport you can use. The trick is to plan. If it doesn’t work out, that’s fine, but knowing you’ve set aside the time to write can really help lift the self-imposed pressure we all place on ourselves. Nobody has enough time, and no writer has free time, but there are ways of getting around that. […]


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