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When I tell people I’m an author, the same comment comes up again and again in conversation :

“Oh, I’d love to write, but I don’t have the time.”

And I always smile politely and mutter something about that being a shame, but really? You don’t have the time? I know people who have three children and a full-time job who still, somehow, manage to write books and get them published. Where do they find the time? Is it some magical thing, that you decide you want to be a writer, and God or whoever magically grants you two extra hours in the day reserved for your precious writing time?  What do you think?

Do you know how you get time to be a writer?

You make the time.

That might mean you give up watching Eastenders. It might mean you get up half an hour earlier and fit in some writing before work, or before anyone else in the house gets up. It might mean, if you’re an evening person, going to bed early and taking a laptop and getting half an hour in before you go to sleep. It might mean writing on your lunch break, on the bus or train, while your baby is having a nap. Or getting someone to watch the kids for half an hour while you sneak off to a cafe and write.

Writing is not something that magically does itself while you watch TV. Writing is something that has to be done, and no other bugger is going to do it for you.  Even just half an hour a day is enough to build up an impressive amount of words, provided you dedicate it to writing and not to the glorious art of procrastination. Be ready to write at any given moment, don’t faff around looking for your special pen or getting a cup of tea.

If your life is so hectic that you don’t think you can manage to sit down for, say, fifteen minutes twice a day, then you’re probably working yourself up a nice juicy ulcer… or maybe you don’t want to be a writer as much as you think you do.

Because writers write. There are always excuses we can come up with for not writing. Don’t let “I haven’t got time” become yours.

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