Let’s talk about this: finding the time

There’s been an interesting set of exchanges going on in the comments on FAAB Jordan Rosenfeld’s Sept. 24 guest blog, and it’s made me want to throw a couple of questions out for general discussion. (I know that not everyone goes back and re-checks comments on the older blogs, as I do.)

First, how DO you make the time to write, amongst your other obligations?

Second, how do the other people in your life respond to your need for writing time? How does your significant other, if any, deal with it? Your kids? Your boss? Your pets?

To get the ball rolling, I’ll start: every couple I have ever known that contained at least one artist — including my household — has had to deal with both of these issues on a daily basis. My parents had these issues (he wrote, she sculpted) throughout my childhood — and that’s why, I suspect, I was the only six-year-old in the history of my elementary school to tell her teachers that she wasn’t going to have kids until she could afford domestic help AND a secretary. Trade-offs must be made, and in my household, then and now, art generally takes priority over dusting.

Generally, my s.o. is pretty understanding about this — although, like Jordan’s husband, he was not altogether pleased when I came home from a month-long writing retreat years ago and announced that I wanted to write and edit full-time. It took him a few months of noticing that I actually had LESS time to play once I rearranged my life to give first priority to my writing (it’s not unusual for me to put in a 60+ hour week) before he really got that what I was doing was WORK.

(He just read that last paragraph over my shoulder, incidentally, and he says that his adjustment was instantaneous: it was the cats who really minded.)

But even with good support, I still have days when I think, “Oh, I can’t possibly start writing until after the laundry is done.”

What about you?

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