Shove Everything To One Side – And Write

That’s what my mother used to say, back in the era when I had a day job. Time to write was limited. So I got up early in the morning and wrote before heading off to the day job.

I also had deadlines. Which would make me crazy. I felt as though I never had enough time to devote to the writing, what with said day job and the day-to-day at home. Vacuuming, decluttering, and other delights of caring for my home, as well as keeping ahead of the weeds in my garden. Exercise, yes, doing that as much as possible. And keeping up with friends and family, the social connectivity that is important in my life.

Back when I was working, I would lament the approaching deadline and the things that crop up demanding time and attention. Mom would say, “Just shove everything to one side and write.”

Okay. I shove. And I write.

That’s why the cat hair is getting thick on the carpet right now and the pile of mail remains unopened. When we went into pandemic lockdown, I swore I was going to clean out the closets and drawers. I still haven’t gotten to that.

Meetings I used to attend in person, of the local chapters of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime, were replaced by Zoom. Logging into that wasn’t as time-consuming as driving to wherever the meeting was to be held, but it still took time and I got burned out on the online meetings.

I am publishing my own work now, so the deadlines are self-imposed. But they are deadlines nonetheless.

At the end of June, I returned from visiting family in another state. Waiting for me were several commitments. One included providing feedback on several stories I’d agreed to read. Another was sending along a photo, bio, and other information to the host of an upcoming podcast. That done, I focused on the monthly newsletter I do with fellow Ladies of Mystery writer D. Z. Church. And this blog, which goes up on the first Monday of each month.

And the biggest self-imposed deadline of all—the next book.

The day job no longer consumes time and energy. But still, I feel like there is never enough time to write.

Unless I make it. Here’s what prolific author Nora Roberts says. And I concur.

6 thoughts on “Shove Everything To One Side – And Write

  1. I agree! If you don’t make the time, it will never get written. Lately, I’ve been feeling behind because of family commitments. Which, I do put first, but the rest can wait as I am getting behind schedule this year with my writing goals. Great post and quote!


  2. I’m with your mother. Shove everything else aside and just write. And my house looks it, but fortunately my husband doesn’t seem to mind and my friends understand. I know several people who “want to write,” but if you really want to, you will. There is no “wishing” your way to the finish line.


  3. Good advice–but I have no trouble shoving aside the mundane tasks. I do have trouble with things that I know I should be doing in the writing department, like you, various blogs I’m committed to.


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