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Time to Write July 31, 2011

Posted by Tom Wells in Tom's Posts.

I have a wife and two kids and a full-time job. So the obvious question becomes, when do I find times to write?

Getting to work by 8 am means dropping the kids off by 7 am which means getting the kids up by 6 am.  I started getting up at 5 am so I could shower and have ½ hour to 45 minutes of distraction free writing. While everyone else is asleep in the house, I write. No one is asking for desert 2 hours before dinner. There’s no homework to help with, no honey-dos, no TV shows to suck me into. It’s just the quiet, me, and my imagination.

Then there are airports. Most people dread hearing that a flight is delayed, I love it usually. I pop out the old netbook and escape into my imagination. The days of the leather bench seats seem to be a part of the past.  Now there are computer counters with stools and outlets. Unfortunately, I have to lose precious time to shutting down the computer and then booting it back up after I get 10,000 feet in the air.

I just wish that the FAA would stop C Y’ing their A’s and let people use their electronic devices during take-offs and landings.  Are we really flying in machines so delicate this is a problem? Up in the sky can be a great place to write when the plane isn’t too crowded. But again, just as my writing hits its stride, the Captain will invariably come on the PA announcing that it’s time to land and again the FAA makes us turn off our electronic devices.  I sometimes wonder if the government support of Amtrak doesn’t have something to do with this.

Some weekends are golden.  I can find the right balance to spending time with my family, doing chores and still find an hour or two of quality writing time.  Then again, what happens more is a backed up toilet, or a broken sprinkler head, or relatives come to visit and a whole 48 hours goes by without a chance to write.  Those are weekends I have come to regret.

I have to tell myself it won’t always be like this.  It has already become easier to find writing time as my youngest has grown out of diapers and can make a lunch for himself. I have hopes that I may get some short stories published and a readership built.  I have also been trying to format my novel, Red Sands of Revolution, for e-publication.  I want it to look as ready as I can make it first though.  Perhaps if I do things right, I can start to build an income from my writing.  I do have an employer who would let me cut my time back (with a corresponding cut in pay), and I would jump at the chance to have more time for writing.

If not, if my stories remain only for me and my handful of readers, and the stories will keep coming.  They have for over twenty years now, though at times I have confined them to my mind for longer stretches then I would prefer. Eventually, I always come back to the keyboard and let them out. I am confident that like the millions of painters who put brush to canvas for no other reason than the joy of doing so, I will always continue to write.  Someday I will be retired from my other career, and then I will have hours a day to write.  What a joy that would be.


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