It's elusive, isn't it?
Weird how in the same amount of hours on one day you get a ton done and the next day you fritter it away.
Time is either the writer's friend, or the bane of her existence, more often the latter. Nearly every client and student I coach struggles with time, and most of the time that struggle is about trying to get enough of it.
But lately the truth of the time conundrum has hit me.
It is not about time, it is about energy. Or more to the point, a lack thereof.
Case in point: watching TV. For years, I've been a dedicated non-TV watcher. One of my favorite rants has been about how much time we all waste watching TV, how brainless it is, yada yada yada.
Enter the ancient sexy elderly pug named Buster, who we rescued from the Humane Society shortly before Christmas. (Alas, his buddy Ally died in March. Miss that girly.) For you civilians who are not pug owners, pugs are creatures of habit, sort of like your crotchety grandpa who has to have dinner at the same time every night. Buster has developed a TV-watching habit, fueled by his admiration for Steven Tyler on American Idol.
Buster likes to snuggle up on the orange Ikea futon in the family room and watch TV and every evening, he yips and barks if this doesn't happen.
So I have started watching way more TV than I have in years. Because, you know, I gotta keep the pug happy. And here's the deal: I kinda like it. I find it relaxing. I find myself working harder during the day so that I can watch TV with Buster at night.
Because the truth of the matter is that by the time I'm done with dinner, my brain is fried anyway. And I'm no longer good for writing or working on business stuff. (I know, I know, I could read a book and I often do–last night I tore through If I Stay by Gayle Forman. I think it is time to admit that some of the best writing these days is for the young adult market.)
Thus, the point of this post: it is not about lack of time, it is about lack of energy.
Yeah, technically I've got time in the evenings to work on my novel. But I don't have the mental energy. And that's the real issue we have to face.
I've got a few suggestions, but this post has already gone on way longer than I intended, so I'll take up the topic again next week.
How do you gather and maintain energy for writing?
In the meantime, come back on Friday, when I'll feature a guest post by Erica Nelson, author of Happiness Quotations. See you then!
Photo by clix.