I’m moving interstate. It turns out that I own quite a lot of stuff that I want to take with me and after 16 years of life in Melbourne, I have a lot of loose ends to tie up as well. The universe might as well have handed me a ‘get out of writing free’ card with a credit limit of at least two weeks. I am currently swimming in the most dangerous form of procrastination, that which appears necessary.
Getting moving quotes, cleaning, packing up and closing various accounts should not be a full time job, yet that is what I have managed to turn it into. So how do you get around these unavoidable bumps that life throws at you without hurting your writing? You use whatever time you are given to the best of your ability.
A big writing challenge I have to face is learning how to write in small snippets of time. A friend writes on the train/tram in the mornings and sometimes manages to do as many words during her commute as I do in a whole day at home! Sceptical, l tried it out on a 20 minute train ride sitting in an overcrowded carriage with people looking over my shoulder. I wrote over 300 words!
Bringing that habit home can be hard, especially when you are dealing with life stresses (like moving). At home there are too many other temptations for short spots of time; eating, reading, packing or (worst of all) TV. But you need to be strong and work out what is the best use of your time. What would it be good for you to do in that 20 minute window?
So don’t use time limits as your excuse, you do not need hours to get a few more words on the page, minutes can be enough. It all comes back to my standard writer’s block advice; just write! Besides, most tasks are best done when planned in advance, so if possible plan a block of writing time, and then a block of ‘life event management’ time. But if you can’t do that just write when you can, it will be more often than you think!