A few years ago, before he was famous, I had the opportunity to talk with bestselling author, James Dashner, about how he found time to write. Then he had just quit his job as an accountant and started writing full-time. I wanted to know how he balanced a full-time job with his roles as a husband and father. He told me that in order to be successful writer, you had to treat it like a job. It has to be that important to you. Once he started treating his own writing as a job, he found he wrote a lot more. He would sacrifice lunch breaks, hanging out with friends, and watching favorite shows.
I thought this was some great advice so I started treated my writing like my part-time job. You wouldn’t believe the mindset that put me in once I took that advice. We don’t find time to write, we make time, and if we treat it like a job, we become more successful at it.
Naypong / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
You might know that I work from home as a freelance illustrator and cover artist. Some might think that because I work from home I would have loads of time to write. Nope. Just like I had to when I had a regular day job, I have to make time to write. Making time to write might consist of sacrificing things we normally do. I don’t get to spend hours in front of the TV watching a show or playing a game, not if I want to finish a book. When I tell you to sacrifice things, I am not saying to sacrifice important things. Don’t ignore your children, spouse, full-time work, or friends, just because you want to write. You will find yourself giving up the little things (that once taken away aren’t even missed) and finding more time.
I am not as successful as James Dashner, maybe I will never be—or perhaps one day it will happen. We are all in different stages of our careers as writers. I do know that James’ career all began because he took the time to make his writing important. I hope we can do the same.