"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
Information & inspiration to hone your craft and increase your cash...Since 2009

Thursday, September 19, 2013

12 Ways to Steal More Time for Writing!

There I was. Bored out of my brain---sitting, toe-tapping and waiting in the doctor's office to be seen, that I actually started counting the number of floor tiles in my head, and contemplating what I would fix for dinner.

Why is it that it's a problem when we're late for our appointment, but they can see us whenever they get around to it? Hello? :-)

Anyhow, as I was sitting there, I had an epiphany of sorts.
Why not use the "down-time" time to keep up with my writing?
And a new post was born!

One of the biggest complaints I get from writers I coach and blogging buddies as well, is not having enough time to write. Perhaps the same holds true for you.

But, it is possible to pursue our creative dreams without a great investment of time and sweat equity.
It all depends upon our goals, lifestyle, and even our genre of writing.

For example, sometimes I can pen a short poem, slogan, or greeting card verse in a matter of minutes.  With this in mind, here are a few creative ways to steal more time for writing in the months ahead...

A Dozen Ideas to Explore

1. While waiting at the Dr.'s office

2. While the kids are napping

3. Early in the morning before everyone wakes up and hits the floor

4. While grabbing a pedicure

5. Commuting by bus, train, or plane, (that you're not operating, of course)

6. While taking a bubble bath

7. On your lunch break at your 9 to 5

8. During periods of insomnia

9. While waiting for clothes to wash at the laundromat

10. When the kids are at school

11. At a boring party (be the "wallflower" with a cause)

12. While your kids are at a playdate

Thoughts? Which is your favorite? Any you'd like to add?

Image: Freedigitalphotos.net


  1. Jen--I've written during a boring meeting or workshop. Since my handwriting is illegible to everyone except myself, I write in longhand, and people think I'm taking notes on the meeting/workshop--lots of notes.

    1. Clever. I love it! Thanks for "stealing" the time to comment.

    2. Because of my work experience in amung other things a 1 Hour Photo Service, and later on in life in the Music Business, with things like sudden 'Rush Releases' and things like that...,

      I frequently look for way's to be a little flexible, able to 'Juggle with Time' and to organise things in practical ways,

      For example like going to the Beach for Swimming, Cooling Down, and Relaxing while reading Books to Review. For example reading about the Art of Stress Free Productivity that I recently wrote a Book Review about.

    3. Thanks, H.P.
      Sounds like a plan to me. :-)

  2. I always intend to write at the beach, but it never happens. Early morning when the house is quiet and I have a cup of hot peach and herb tea to sip...my stolen moments.

    1. Herbal tea? The brew my muse is into too! :-) Thanks for adding to the chat here.

  3. I sometimes write when I am waiting for hubby to finish getting ready when we go out to lunch. I learned a long time ago to take something to read when I go to a doctor. Those waiting room magazines are usually out of date. I used to see people with laptop computers open as they wait for someone to come out of surgery at the hospital.

    1. quietspirit,

      You make a good reference about the mags in the waiting room; I was surprised to discover there were none in my Dr.'s office. Not one. Always good to hear from you.

  4. This is a wonderful list! I grab time whenever I can to write, read, or even catch up on letter writing (the handwritten kind). I've written blog posts, articles, book reviews, and more while at the salon, the dentist, at my daughter's swimming lessons, at my sons' hockey practice, while waiting for my mother in law's surgery, etc. My latest outside the office writing adventure was sitting in the truck while waiting for my husband to meet another contractor for a late afternoon appointment. Writing time + time with husband = priceless. :) Your ideas have have the wheels turning here. I am sure there are more ways to squeeze writing into the day. Thanks, Jen!

    1. Karen,

      I love that you found the ideas inspiring. Can't wait to see what you come up with. :-)

  5. Also sometimes when watching a Movie on tv, I notice myself wasting my time on watching meaningless commercials that mean nothing to my life, just only to wait for the Movie to continue.

    Sometimes those commercial breaks can take a pretty long time, and are a great opportunity to use my time a little more productive by use that time for writing.

    1. Great suggestion, H.P., every little bit counts. Right? :-)

    2. Actually - especially after reading that book about Stress Free Productivity - that I wrote about in a previous comment, I think a little different about time management now,

      Now I think more general in terms of just 'Managing Projects', and also actually frequently just schedule time for having some fun, or just 'to do nothing',
      To be able to keep getting new ideas.

  6. Hi Jennifer -

    Most of my extra moments are taken with reading. What creates more time for me? It is not more time in the 24-hr. day span, but how productive I am when I do this one thing: I start my day journaling, praying, and reading my Bible. It helps me be at peace and keeps me focused on tasks.

    Adequate sleep also gives me greater clarity, which doesn't always happen around here.

    Smiles to you,
    Susan :)

    1. Good fedback here, Susan. Peace is essential to productivity. As we say in church: "Peace be unto you." :-)

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  8. BTW. talking about Time Efficiency, Productivity & 'Managing Projects', (or in this case 'Follow Up' Projects) Since people usually want to spend their time productively, it becomes a Challenge to convince readers to keep reading blog posts.

    Because of that I recently made the Title Headline for the Book Review I wrote about previously more Promising, Interesting & Explaining, Instead of only the (Boring) tiltle: 'How to Write a Book Review'
    Made it into:

    'Discover How to Write
    a Book Review for Your Blog,
    In a Relaxed Way'.

    (Also re-newed a lot of other Blog Posts Titles with new Headlines.)