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Writing with a full-time job

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Hi Folks,

I'm a new member and am excited to have joined SCBWI.  I have a full-time career and write in my spare time.  I'd like to know how how you approach writing in your spare time.  Do you carve out a few hours on your day off? An hour at lunch and in the evening? 

What are your techniques for staying focused and getting the work done?  What has been successful for you?  How do you find the time and energy to write after coming home from a shift?  I'd love to hear some pointers and what has worked for you.

Thank you for your time and consideration.
#1 - August 25, 2017, 01:50 AM

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:welcome Lauren  I'd experiment with writing at different times (before work, during lunch, after work, after everybody else goes to sleep) and see what works best for you. Bottom line is that something has to go, whether it's sleep, or TV, or social life, or ... :clover

Here are some good threads on this very topic and there are more :)
https://www.scbwi.org/boards/index.php?topic=76278.msg966076#msg966076
https://www.scbwi.org/boards/index.php?topic=74204.msg912027#msg912027
https://www.scbwi.org/boards/index.php?topic=74461.msg919288#msg919288
https://www.scbwi.org/boards/index.php?topic=72249.msg884377#msg884377
#2 - August 25, 2017, 06:18 AM
TEN EASTER EGGS (Cartwheel/Scholastic, 2015)
www.vijayabodach.blogspot.com
Author of over 40 books and 60 magazine pieces

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While my kids were younger, still at home, as an Illustrator I usually stayed up late to work. I've now come to the conclusion it would have been better to get up early (talking maybe 4am)  Your fresher, the house is as quite as night time. Of course this means your probably going to be sleeping by 9 or 10pm.
#3 - August 25, 2017, 07:16 AM
"Penelope and the Humongous Burp"
"Penelope and the Monsters"
"Penelope and the Preposterous Birthday Party"

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As far as time, I think each of us have to figure out what works best for our situation.  I'm a full-time teacher and also volunteer as an SCBWI assistant RA. I tend to write in chunks of time--penciling in blocks on my calendar that will work. I mostly write in the evenings. I find it very helpful to do two things: 1. have a small writing ritual to tell your brain it's time to write. I have a small candlelit fountain in my office that I turn on and the sound of bubbling water is my internal signal that it's time to write.  2. Before you start writing each time take a minute to jot down what you plan to accomplish--just a few words to get you focused on your task. Those 2 things do wonders for me.
#4 - August 25, 2017, 12:42 PM
Rebecca Langston-George
The Booth Brothers: Drama, Fame & the Death of Lincoln
Capstone: September 1, 2017

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I appreciate all of the responses and links to other discussions on this topic.  I'll try out some of your suggestions and see how I progress with the work.  Thank you!
#5 - August 28, 2017, 05:03 PM

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