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Juggling the Work Load

You will undoubtedly notice that today the blog is that much shorter and with good reason. This week I chose to take some time out. That's important for a writer. It can be all to easy for us to get ahead of ourselves and ignore our more sociable commitments. So, this is a blog about juggling life with aspiration.


I am NOT the Best Authority...

I am far from the best authority on this. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that I find it all too easy to dive write into writing my next project, pushing the publicity of my current titles, and being an involved presence in the writing community. My suffering family often have to put up with long periods where I have secluded myself away. Then, on top of all of that, let's not forget that I also work full time (no money tree of success for me) as parental commitments. Since CV-19 became a thing. I have become my 5-year-old boy's playmate, teacher, and more. Phew! That's a lot of juggling. So what gives? Surely something has to? How do you juggle life with aspiration? Personally, the only way I have found it possible is simply to take some time out and recognize that sometimes other things matter more.


Publicity vs Private Life

I don't write about my private life all that much. I don't claim it to be any more or less difficult than anyone else, but it's a struggle sometimes for me to put away the laptop and push silent on my phone when I know that doing so means I could miss that opportunity. In the UK where I live, the shops have re-opened and most of us have returned to work. My family hasn't seen much of me. So, this week I took the difficult decision that it was time to take a writer's break. Having been furloughed from work, I needed to remember how I did all of this again. It's been difficult. I've not seen my little boy as much as I would like. I have a management position and I have an email that is full of memos that requires my attention not to mention meetings to go to. I haven't written anything this week and that always grinds at me. It makes me feel like I have been less productive and as I write this, my little boy is telling me of the full day I have ahead of me - lego first, followed by trains, followed by... and the list goes on. I also know that as someone who periodically suffers from depression, my writing seems to be the best cure when my mood is at its lowest - like a security blanket that I am unwilling to let go of at times.


It's Not All Doom and Gloom...

I know it's all too easy to get wrapped up in our writing but today, I'm just going to be mum. Oh, I am definitely going to feel the burn later. I am definitely going to look at that chapter that I have tried to write 3 times and I'm still not happy with and hang my head in despair (why won't the words just come as I want them to?). A part of me that is selfish will definitely be angry that I have in some way frittered away my time. We're all guilty of this - if you're a writer who can say that you have got it all planned, I am going to call you out as a liar. However, and I can't stress this enough, sometimes you just have to muzzle the beast that drives you and remember that life still exists outside the pages of your latest masterpiece and appreciate our long-suffering families. Today, that's going to be me and if you have been writing yourself to seclusion, maybe it's time for you to take a writing holiday too. Enjoy the sunshine if you have it. Take that walk with the family. Be mindful that you haven't called that friend. It's ok to take some time off. You'll miss some opportunities for sure and that chapter won't write itself, but there is always tomorrow.


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Copyright: Elizabeth Stephens 2020.

"Books don't just go with you, they take you to a place you've never been." - Anonymous