I am often asked how I combine having a 9-5 job with my writing activities. The truth is that since writing is something which I enjoy very much, I do not see combining it with my regular job as a chore. In fact, I feel it has made my daily life much more interesting.
I am not saying that it is always easy, but I take writing as my second job, something which just has to be done. Thanks to social media, apps, and online resources, I have been able to develop a writing routine which works for me:
Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
My alarm goes off at 6am, but I am usually already awake by this time (sometimes for hours!).
I usually post new poems, stories and essays on my blog on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Usually, I would have saved drafts of the posts in question advance. On the specified mornings, I go to my WordPress app on my IPhone or IPad and re-read the draft of the poem/story/essay which I intend to post on the blog that day.
When I am satisfied that it is error-free, I click the ‘publish’ button, and then start getting ready for work. WordPress actually allows you to schedule posts to be published automatically, but I just choose not to use it. Maybe it’s the perfectionist in me…
Before I leave for work, I share the post in question on my social media feeds-Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and sometimes LinkedIn, depending on the theme of the post in question.
Aside from the fact that putting up posts in the morning is very convenient for me, my WordPress statistics show that I get more views for my posts on the blog in the mornings.
I usually spend weekends working on article pitches for other platforms, or on content for my own blog. I make use of my journal, IPhone and my laptop for writing during this period.
Some weekends can be more productive than others. Sometimes, I am very focused and brimming with ideas which I just cannot wait to write down. Other times, I am restless and just cannot seem to think of anything interesting to write about. I also find myself easily distracted by reruns of ‘The Simpsons’ and ‘How I met your mother’ showing on TV.
This lack of inspiration really used to stress me out, but now I just take it in stride, and I am usually able to come up with something to write eventually.
I also take some time to share and reshare my past posts on social media, so that anyone who missed them when they were published the first time around can catch up on reading them. For this, especially for Twitter, I use Hootsuite to schedule and share my past posts so that they get uploaded at different times in the day. This gives me free time to focus on writing new things.
Every day of the week.
Before I started my blog last year, I used the notes section of my phone to write my frustrations about certain situations in my life. Now, it is where I jot down random thoughts and ideas. I scroll through them at the end of the day to see what I can develop into poems and stories for my blog or posts for other platforms.
I have also discovered that I need almost absolute silence when writing a story or essay, but I can pretty much write poems under any circumstances (I wrote a poem, ‘I feel free’ while experiencing some turbulence on a flight!).
I know that quite a lot of writers read my blog so I would love to know your what own writing routines are. Please let me know in the comments section!
Thanks for reading.