Working and Writing

I don’t know about you, but I’m not lucky enough to be able to write full time. I don’t expect to be able to write full time either and if I’m honest, I think I would become a major expert at procrastinating should it ever become the case! I work full time in order to support myself and my partner. I am lucky enough to actually really love my job. I am a support worker in a job where I meet new people regularly, work with some of the best colleagues I could ask for and I’m given full autonomy to make my own decisions and get on with my work. No two days are ever the same and I like that. I absolutely love it.

On the other hand, my job does get pretty tiring. I work a shift pattern of earlys, mids and lates. It’s a pattern that just recently came in too so I’m still trying to get used to it but after a full month run through I have to say I quite like it. The problem I’ve found so far is that, through my early shifts I come home still full of energy and raring to write. Which is obviously great.

The mids, I’ve found so far, have been the worst. The shift spans the middle of the day meaning I don’t really have a lot of time before or after work. I come home tired and struggle to write anything at all. The lates give me a little more time in the morning to write but of course it means I need to drag my ass out of bed and make a sustained effort to stay awake and write! (Okay, it’s not that bad considering I’m really a morning person!)

On top of this shift pattern, if you remember I’m going for a no zero day. So far I have succeeded (except one day in January) and I’m proud of myself but at the same time (particularly when I did those mid shifts) I found that I was maybe writing a couple of hundred words, if that, per day. And that really bums me. When I write I like to sit down and really crank out the word count otherwise I don’t feel like I’ve achieved much. Of course it won’t happen everyday but so far this month, my word count is pretty atrocious compared to January.

I have a lot of short stories on the go with ideas spinning through my mind as well as edits on a novel and I get frustrated when I don’t have time to sit and write (or edit). This weekend I’m off and as well as everything else (housework, DIY, gym, socialising), I hope to get some major writing done.

Do any of you work full time? What is your day job? How do you manage writing and working full time? If you don’t work, do you have any suggestions for us?

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4 Comments

  1. So admired! I started my blog a few days ago, one of the main reasons for me to do that is I do need practice my writing since English is my second language. And when the kids getting old, I found it is every difficult to help them on English. Hope it’s not too late to.

  2. Thank you! Obviously it’s up to you how you want to work your blog, but one way to improve is to blog regularly. I try for once a week.

  3. I’m doing a day job as an intern now and I used to work in a pub. So basically now I’m doing early shift while I previously did late shift. I find that for me, late shift gives me better chances to write because I’m fresh in the morning as compared to now when I feel really sluggish when I come home from work. I love writing short stories when I have ideas and I think that I thrive in the day most. Weekends are probably the best times to write with full concentration because the hours that are free during weekdays usually get taken up by some other important things 🙂

    • That makes sense. I think different shift patterns work for different people but then maybe it’s about adapting too. But I, like you, find it easier to write first thing in the morning or weekends (or my days off) when there is less distraction. When I come home from work I find I can be too exhausted to consider writing.

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