Before I decided to actually give myself the time and space to write I would spend large chunks of energy thinking about writing. Not the physical act, but the stories. Instead of reading on my commute to work, I would find myself with my book in my lap staring out the window of the train at nothing. My mind would be busy concocting characters, plot lines or scenes for a story. Sometimes they would be momentary ideas that I never thought about again. Other times, the ideas would stick with me, following me around from activity to activity. I found my mind wandering to these stories while I was cleaning my house, walking my dog, even watching TV! The problem was, I didn’t think much of them. I didn’t think much of myself either. Sure, it was a fun character to think about in my head, but it certainly wasn’t worth putting on paper. Not to mention the fact that I had tried writing before and I wasn’t any good at it. I could never finish anything, so why bother with this story? Plus, I didn’t actually have time to write. I just had these moments between things, like my commute to work, to think about it. It wasn’t possible to write while I cleaned my house, so I must not have the time or energy.
It wasn’t until one of these random stories started to take over my life that I finally stopped to listen to what my heart really wanted. It wanted to write, and it had a story that needed to come out.
I wasn’t ready though. At least not to sit down and start writing a novel! But, I did decide to take some time for writing. To make some space for it in my life and see what happened. Maybe, just maybe, giving it space would make me realize that I could consider writing the novel that I had started creating in my head while I walked my dog.
What happened? Cut to five years later and I have published that novel and am a few months away from publishing a second novel! Giving myself a little bit of time for my writing turned into something I never imagined possible. I actually finished writing the book that I thought I was just daydreaming about.
Since then I’ve continued writing other stories, and just writing exercises to keep myself active and I’ve discovered 5 reasons that giving writing the time it needs is important to achieving writing goals.
As much as I would love to tell you the secret to writing a book overnight, the reality is it takes time! Writing doesn’t happen on its own and writing doesn’t happen without giving it the time it needs to happen. It can be five minutes a day or five hours a day, it doesn’t matter, you just need to give your story the time it needs to be created.
Often these artistic parts of ourselves have been suppressed in order to survive the world. It doesn’t often pay the bills to sit and dream up stories, at least not until you have given yourself the time to build a writing career. So, just giving the time to be creative, whether you are working on a story, or just doing a short writing exercise to flex the creative muscle, it is important to give ourselves this time for self-expression. Building this muscle will make writing your opus much easier.
It is fun! If you are like me and constantly writing in your head, you obviously get pleasure out of the process. So, why not make it official with a little bit of time? Giving ourselves the time to do things we love and that are fun can make a big difference in our quality of life. Having fun is important for stress relief and therefore general health. That’s right, writing might actually be healthy for you!!
I don’t think it matters if you can afford only a few minutes a day to write. The amount of time isn’t important, it is the fact that you’ve given the time that matters. With 5 minutes a day, you can build the writing muscle, start creating characters, develop plot lines, write a novel, connect with your creative self, relax, have fun, enjoy life a bit more and finally give yourself the time to connect with something you love to do!
Hi, I'm Lia! I'm an author and the creator of Cozy Writer's Room. I believe in the power of storytelling and love helping others tell their stories using simple productivity tools like printables!