It's definitely a challenge, especially when I come home late in the evening, tired from being on my feet all day. On those days I try to get at least one #1k1hr done before I get ready for work, or I draft a blog post, or outline some ideas for a scene--so that I will have something to show for the day's writing activities. (I try as hard as I can to count tweeting as "writing related", but it's a delusion I can't hold onto for very long. Not with a straight face anyway.)
Still, there are some things I like about writing part-time:
- I finally get a day off. When I was writing full-time, I rarely took a day off. I didn't feel like I could justify it since I wasn't "working". Except that was really the problem. I was ALWAYS working. I felt like I had to use all my time writing, or doing writing-related activities. If I didn't, I felt guilty for wasting valuable minutes and hours that should have been devoted to WIPs. Now I don't feel guilty. I do feel like I have to make good use of my writing time, which also requires me to be creative about using lunch breaks and brainstorming during commutes. But it's also nice to take time away from writing 24/7, allowing my brain a chance to refresh and replenish itself.
- I get inspired by things outside my computer screen. I love to stay at home and type away at my stories, except for when I'm REQUIRED to stay home, then I'm antsy to get out into the real world. Yes, my inner contrarian celebrates "Opposite Day" like it's a national holiday. Now when I close the laptop, waving farewell to my characters so I can head to work, I look forward to seeing actual people and events, not just words and stories about them. I benefit creatively by having this distinct division between "writing time" and "work time".
- I am eager to get back to my story. Work can be very draining, or sometimes the commute is hellish, and, once I get home, I barely have enough energy to fix "dinner", even when it has only two ingredients: peanut butter and a spoon. How could I possibly sit down to write after a day like that? As it turns out, writing smoothes out the rough spots of the day. My characters entice me, showing me what they've been up to while I've been gone, and the story becomes a respite from the work tasks that wore me down.
I'm hopeful there will be a time when I can write full-time again, but until I do, writing part-time suits me--and my stories--just fine.