Carving time out to write was difficult once I returned to the workforce. I no longer had the luxury of the entire day before me. I used every excuse in the book--tired from work, laundry to do, haven't been to the store in a week, etc. Then one day I took myself out to lunch. Wow. It worked. I began to write during my lunch hour. Sometimes I'd be in my car with a P B and J, when I was flush with cash I'd go to my favorite restaurant. I finished three manuscripts in three years.
Today was a good writing day.
Not every day can make that claim. Today I knew what I wanted to write and I wrote it. There have been other days, I have been equally as prepared and not had the same successful outcome. A charged laptop, good lighting and background sounds all help me, but do not by themselves create success.
I believe that the key to today's completion of 20 pages I actually think I'll keep was that I did not get in my own way. I did not think of the impossibility of reaching the zone where words flow from brain to fingertip. I did not put up roadblocks like bring my phone with me, worry about housework or focus on the 300 or so pages I would ultimately have to reach. I only focused on the scenes I needed for today.
Am I bragging? Tooting my own horn? You bet. As writers we spend too much time talking about what we haven't been able to do; we downplay our battles so don't have to admit that the odds of winning the war are slim. Tomorrow my insecurities or distractions may win. Today I won the battle.
I always thought I didn't have time to write...yet. I was busy going to college, raising four children and earning a living to pay for four college tuitions. Then one year I decided to give it a try. I read Stephen King's book on writing. I'd write 10 pages a day. Start in the morning after the kids were dropped at school and not stop until I'd reached the 10th page. If I finished early I'd treat myself to chocolate. Strangely enough it worked. Defining my timestarted to create the discipline I needed. By the end of the year I'd written a 300+ page novel. It was crap, but hey--I did it and then stuffed it in a drawer.