Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Saturday Soirée - Creating balance in your writing career

When I first began writing, I was so passionate about it that I swear it oozed through my pores. I was on edge all the time trying to choose the right words with which to present my material so that it will be easy to read and understand and powerful enough to elicit a positive reaction from the readers.

Now that is fine and that is as it should be. Professionalism is important if we are to succeed as writers.

But I had fallen into the same rut that besets many other writers. I had allowed the reality of being a writer to over-shadow the love and joy of just writing. I needed balance and share with you three tips that I used to create and maintain the balance I needed.

1. Remember the passion.
When the dream begins to materialize it is easy to get lost in the light of even the smallest success. By all means, enjoy it but never lose sight of the passion behind the dream. For when the flame begins to die, writing is reduced to mere work. Remembering your passion keeps you sane and satisfied when assignments are difficult, cheques are slow in coming and the motivation to write is low.

2. Make time to write for pleasure.
No matter how tight the deadlines are or research-intensive the work is, fifteen or thirty minutes of personal writing a few times a week, can restore and sustain your connection to the pleasure of writing in the early days. Add variety to those times: freewrite, write from a prompt, do a writing exercise, write in your journal and work on the book you’ve been toying with.

3. Don’t take yourself or life too seriously.
Life is serious business and you are serious about your work and building the kind of life and career you have always dreamed of. Good. But you can still brighten up your day with laughter, enjoying the simple pleasures of lunch with friends, date night with your spouse, fun activities with your children, alone time to refresh you mind and your body.

It is possible to devote the required time and energy to your writing career and still savor the pleasure of writing. If you have lost your balance try these suggestions or devise your own to create the balance you need for a well-rounded writing career.

As always, you are welcome to share your thoughts and experiences.


Bluestocking said...

Intersting article. So what are you currently writing?

Cheryl Wright said...

Hello there Bluestocking,

Thanks for visiting.

I'm not doing any long-term work right now. Intermittently, I write a few pages in each of the three books I would like to publish in the future.

These days I spend my time writing for my weekly column, miscellaneous feature assignments, blogging, surfing and other writing-related activities.

Additionally, I keep house (and all it entails) for my husband, my son and my newly adopted kitten, Immi.

Immi earns her keep by filling in as my muse when she is not sleeping, playing, eating and playing and sleeping and eating. She is so busy I just have to be thankful when she makes time for me. (:-)

What about you Bluestocking, what are you working on?

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