Balance — a topic near and dear not just to every writer’s heart, or anyone who has a day job and a creative pursuit, or any person with a family and a job and interests of her own — well, okay, that probably includes all of us. Yes, it’s time to talk about how I balance everything I have to do: wife, mother, daughter, freelance worker, writer, blogger, friend, person . . .
Short answer: I haven’t a clue.
Longer answer: I believe in dynamic balance, not static balance. Static balance is a house of cards (yes, I mean this as a literal example), while dynamic balance is tightrope walking. If I try for static balance, any time something changes, I’m going to be knocked for a loop. On the other hand, if I’m moving and adjusting as I go for the current conditions, I have a chance to make it across to the other side. Except, of course, in life you don’t just do three performances nightly. You’re always on.
I can’t do it all. Maybe some people can, but I’m not one of them. Right now, I’m up to my ears in commitments. I’m indexing a text on Heidegger. I have a proofreading job coming in next week, and another the week after that. I’m negotiating for a copyediting job. I’m writing my epic fantasy for Camp NaNo, and when I have a few moments free, I’m working on editing a paranormal romance to put up for sale. I’ve got short stories that I should finish and start submitting at some point this year, but they’re so far on the back burner — no, let’s face it, I took them off the back burner and shoved them into the freezer.
So I have to try to prioritize. Family comes first — for example, even with all the freelance work on my plate, I’m taking Monday off to help out at my son’s end-of-year picnic. If there’s a work deadline, often that’s next up, though I’m trying to make sure to make time for the writing anyway.
The simple truth is, if I want to have things finished and up for sale, available for people to read, I have to write. It’s easy to let that slip, whether because of work or lack of sleep or other commitments. The trick is, it never goes away entirely, and things do get done. Just not all at once.
Balance is over time, ever changing, and often feels out of reach.
What about you? How do you balance the calls on your time?
Today’s post was inspired by the topic “Balancing writing with the rest of life”– June’s topic in the Merry-Go-Round Blog Tour — an ongoing tour where you, the reader, travel around the world from author’s blog to author’s blog. We have all sorts of writers at all stages in their writing career, so there’s something for everyone to enjoy. The next post in the tour will be on the 4th, by D. M. Bonanno. Be sure to check it out.
If you want to get to know nearly twenty other writers and find out their thoughts on crossing genre lines, check out the Merry-Go-Round Blog Tour. You can find links to all of the posts on the tour by checking out the group site. Read and enjoy!