When I read this question today the first thing, and the truth, that came to my mind was “I don’t”. Then I wondered why? Why don’t I make time to write?
The problem isn’t that I’m not making time to write, the problem is that in not making time to sit and be bored.
Taking the time to do nothing, walk the forest, or sit in silence. I realized, by being asked that question that I don’t need to make time to write, I need to make time to fill my head with the things I want to write. Then the time writing them doesn’t have to be as long.
A silent ride on your commute, no music.
An evening without movies, or games, or books.
I fill up my alone and still time with sounds, or I sleep. I don’t give myself those minutes I need to just put two and two together to want to write something.
When I was younger it was incredibly important to me to write every day on my blog. That was the only way you grew I felt like. On the other hand I had a close friend 10 years ago, who took the time to think and waiting for the puzzle pieces to fall into place before he was ready to write down his posts.
I don’t think this is for everyone. I don’t think it was always for me. I used to write things out as soon as possible, even live blog events. Maybe I did that as a process to be able to move on to the next event, conference, happening to cover. I needed to clear my head.
These days I’m more like my friend, I wait for a lot of puzzle pieces to form in my head before I write them down. This works most of the time, a lot better than trying to write when you just have a tiny kernel, I find waiting for the cup to be full makes it easier and less painful to measure (sorry about the mixed metaphors).
This line is thinking is now more relevant because NaNoWriMo literally just started. Where people are pushing out 50k words in a month. And I wanted to participate, in a way that fits me and where I am now. With this post in mind, I think I’m going to take 60 min every day, while I’m alone and just sit with my thoughts, and see where it brings me.
That said, I also believe that learning new things is an important part of writing. Reading new books, from new cultures. Reading experiences from people who are not like you. Find some piece of history to engorge yourself in.
Never stop learning, and you’ll always have something to write about, just remember to give yourself pause, and make space, rather than just time, to find something to write. Give your head rest, and take a deep breath.