Anyone who writes on a regular basis will know that the biggest obstacle to getting some work done is usually the ability to prioritise.
And by that I mean actually choosing to sit down at the computer and focus on whatever project it is you’re currently working on.
We often put off our writing time by promising to do it later, but then later never comes.
Often we feel guilty: we should be working at our day jobs, cleaning the house, cooking, spending time with loved ones. We want to prioritise our writing, but fear creeps in and allows us to bump it down the to do list.
The main suck on my writing time tends to be writing. Or more precisely, blogging.
I can easily spend 20+ hours a week working on my blog in some capacity, but I don’t spend anywhere near that working on my novel. Yet if anyone asked me, I would always say that I want to be a novelist rather than a blogger.
Sure I love blogging, but writing fiction has always been my main passion.
So why don’t I dedicate more time to it? Why do I, whether consciously or not, prioritise my blog over my book?
There are so many answers to that question that I could go on for days:
- Blogging is easier. It doesn’t require me to write with the same depth as my novel does.
- By blogging, I’m marketing myself and building a platform, which will help me to find readers if I ever get a book published.
- Blogging isn’t as scary. It’s a different form of writing, where I only need entertain a reader for a few minutes.
- Blogging involves shorted pieces of writing, so any obstacles or moments of writers’ block are easier to overcome.
- The growth of my blog has come more easily than success as a novelist. I have a wider pool of potential readers, whereas with a novel I’m trying to impress a small number of literary professionals.
And of course, I love blogging. I’ve fallen into a routine of posting four times a week and that works for me. I know that I need to post at certain times, so I write something, even when it feels like a chore.
I’d love to have a more balanced approach to my writing, and that’s something I’m trying to work on.
Recently it’s been a bit easier, as I’m in editing mode with my novel, so I can sit on the sofa with a paper copy of my manuscript and mark it up with a pencil. The process makes it feel very different to blogging. But the hours still don’t match up.
I don’t really have an answer for this problem, other than to work harder on my book. If I trusted myself to make the most of the time, I might consider cutting back a little on blogging, but I’d probably be tempted into extra time on the sofa instead!
If anyone has any thoughts on managing different projects, especially with limited time, I’d love to hear them in the comments.