Posted by: nancyisanders | August 26, 2014


I’d like to take a survey today…

Option A: How many of you have empty hours of time to write each day?

Option B: How many of you have action packed schedules with homeschooling kids, working at a day (or night) job, or other huge responsibilities and have to be creative about carving out time to write?

Option C: How many of you aren’t really writing at all right now because you have so many other important commitments but you like to keep your “toe in the water” so to speak in the world of writing so if you do find time to write (or the muse strikes you) you can pick up your pen and write?

The reason I’m asking is because last night was a turning point for me. I went from Option B where my schedule was action packed these last few months. My husband Jeff is a teacher and he was off during the summer so we were super busy visiting family and friends, serving together on various church ministries, and spending just-us together-time (a super priority!!!) But today he’s officially back to work and now I have an almost totally clear calendar with over 8 empty hours each day that I can fill up with writing.

(And I gotta fill them up with writing because of all the crazy hectic deadlines that are in front of me.)

There’s no right or wrong about this…I am just curious about what YOU have to deal with on your plate right now when it comes to finding time to write.


  1. Mine is mostly A, but due to procrastination, it sometimes turns into C!

    • Betsy, I had to smile at your honesty. Yes! I hear you!!!!!!

  2. Mostly option B for me; I homeschool and manage the household finances, food and many other things, so my mind whirls with to-dos when I sit down at my computer. But I do have hours here and there to write, if I would just buckle down and use them! 🙂

    • Oh, you’re busy with so many important things! But I can tell you have a heart and a love for writing and you try to grab those precious opportunities whenever you can. Keep at it!!!!

      • Thank you for the encouragement! 🙂

  3. Option A

    • I’m so excited for you!!!! You have an entire empty slate to fill up. It’s a writer’s dream come true!!!!!

  4. It’s interesting the different seasons of life we go through, isn’t it, Nancy? It’s a good thing you’re going back to option A since you have so many deadlines. I’m somewhere between B and C with the goal of moving back to A after my other venture I’m now working on is up and running. That’s why I chose to do this little business so that I can have some free hours each week to write and not be stressed out by a job I don’t like or that uses up the best hours of my days.
    I’m also planning to write a Kitschy Kottage blog so people can see what’s new in the space and that will help me to keep writing too. I guess as writers we have to learn how to ‘go with the flow’ or else end up drowning, right? I think keeping writing goals and priorities can be somewhat of a lifebuoy for us. Saying no to other things and people we love is the hard part for me. It’s a tricky balancing act that sometimes seems to take endless amounts of energy. Seeing you do it and do it well is both inspiring and encouraging. It gives me hope to believe it can be done!

    • Oh Val, I love how you are centering all of your activities around your love to write! And when you get your blog going, let us all know the link to it here so we can come over and cheer you on!

  5. I’m definitely B. Blogged about it recently here:

    ENJOY your time! May it be productive and joyous.

    • Thank you so much for sharing your link. I LOVE the creative ideas you share on how to find time to write with a busy schedule. And hope you get lots of writing done on your train rides!!!!!

  6. Technically I’m more busy now that school has started, but it was a busy summer, too. Now the Boy is back in school, college, I have some quiet hours alone in the house to get some writing work done for the next Cucamonga book. I most look forward to hearing what the critiquers have to say about our first two chapters of the children’s story we submitted for the SCBWI Agents Day conference. I am sooo tired of rewriting them.

    • How was Agent’s Day? I hope you get some really encouraging feedback on your manuscript!!!!! And glad you have time to focus on your new book, too.

  7. Option A…but I’m not writing at all! I need help and encouragement. I’m letting my talent go to waste, and I regret that. I also know that I’m not being a good steward of the abilities God has given me. There it is, out in the open for all to read.

    • Audrey, I know I am speaking for everyone else when I say “Thank you for being so honest and sharing what’s real in your life right now.” I’m praying that instead of feeling condemned you will feel encouraged and strengthened by God to start taking just one step at a time and write just one word at a time. Always remember, God’s power is made perfect in our weakness!(2 Cor. 12:9) He loves to use us in our weakest moments and days.

      • Thank you for your kind and encouraging response Nancy. It touches me in a way that is hard to explain. I’m going to print it out and pray over it. I appreciate you taking time during your busy day to respond to my discouragement. God helps us by helping each other…thanks for your help!

  8. It is so nice to hear others admit that they aren’t using their talent or time productively. I have at least 3 to 4 hours each evening I could use to write but somehow never do. I spend more time reading about writing!

  9. I’m at B right now. Funny you ask this cuz last night I was thinking it’s like I have 3 full time jobs–homeschooling 4th grade, homeschooling 7th grade, and then freelance writing the rest of the day/night. I haven’t had time this month for fun writing on my pb stories. I hope to make time before the end of this month though for the 12×12 challenge!

    • Wow, Tina, you DO have 3 full time jobs!!!! And can you share the info for the 12 x 12 challenge? It sounds like fun!

      • 12×12 pb challenge starts at the beginning of the year with the idea to write 1 pb draft each month. It was started by Julie Hedlund. Here’s her web site:
        There are different levels to be involved in–paid. I’ve done it for 3 yrs.

      • The 12×12 pb challenge starts at the beginning of the year and you write at least 1 pb draft each month. It’s run by Julie Hedlund, and there are different levels of participation (paid).
        I’ve been involved the past 3 yrs.

      • Sounds like fun! Thanks for sharing, Tina.

  10. Hi Nancy! I am somewhere in between B and C with a dash of procrastination and a dose of exhaustion. I work full time (plus!) and have a leadership role on a church board and a library board. I also lead a book group. I am a wife and a mom (to two young men). Oh, I forgot…I just enrolled in seminary. Last, and too often least, I try to find time to write.

    • Oh my, Rona, you are really working hard, hard, hard! Your life and your writing sound very full.

  11. I work full time–9a-6p. I write in my car at lunch stretched out in the back with the windows open and on weekends in between house cleaning, yard work and family time. My five children are grown–so finally, I am option B.
    I just received my two copies of the September issue of Spider Magazine with my published poem “Wishes” (signed the contract in 2010). I also wrapped up writing my middle grade novel and await an editor’s critique of the first ten pages at our September NT SCBWI Conference. After the conference, I will start the big rewrite (actually draft #8), have it read by fellow writers, and submit.

    • Thanks so much for sharing, Carol. I love the visual of you writing on your lunch break…that’s such a great inspiration to us all!!!!

  12. As my husband would say, “A day late and a dollar short!.” However, I’m here today and will say that I’m an A person with hours of free time each day. The best of it is early morning (4-6) or late afternoon. I also have to say that I don’t use my time as constructively as I could. I need to have goals and motivations to keep me on track.

    • Mona, glad you chimed in. And I’m like you…goals and motivation really help keep me going!!!!

  13. The fact that I’m posting four days late shows you I am squarely in category B. I know this is where God has placed me, and am content. I spent so many wasted years in category C. It is amazing how God has allowed me more writing time even though my schedule feels more jam-packed than ever.

    Nancy, I thank-you for deciding to blog in the midst of your crunch time. I pray that it will be a help and encouragement to you in unexpected ways. I know it will continue to be a blessing to us.

    I hope to have many good habits in place by the time I get to be in category A!

    Thanks again!

    • Joanne, thank you for sharing your heart with us. How precious that you know where God wants you to be right now in this season of your writing life and are content. Such great lessons in there for all of us as writers!

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