something’s gotta give – #WhatImWriting

barbed wire view

Recent events on my blog and in my life are making me have a huge re-think at the moment. My widely-shared blog post on education had a big impact on me (I should really write a ‘five things I learned when my blog went viral’ post about, it like a proper blogger would), as did my experience of the kids strike and of running a campaign. Then my week off social media and blogging kind of hammered a few points home. Oh, and that book I read about happiness came along at exactly the right moment to make me pause and reflect too.

So, right now I’m certain I need to make some changes. Blogging, with it’s associated social media, linkies (including my own!) reading and commenting is taking up so much of my time and focus. I want to be an author but I haven’t written anything other than blog posts in weeks. I want to get published but I STILL haven’t got round to sending my manuscripts to the next batch of agents on my list, or got any further with my self-publishing plan for my limericks. I want to learn to illustrate but I’m not giving my course nearly enough attention. And, oh yeah, I want to be a good parent but I often feel I’m juggling so much I can’t focus.

I need more time – more hours in the day, but since ‘becoming ruler of the universe and changing the laws of physics or the way that the world is run’ isn’t really an achievable aim, I’m going to have to settle for cutting something out of my schedule. Or at least hacking my commitments back so I feel less like I’m wading through undergrowth and more like I’m wandering a rugged trail.

Blogging is clearly going to have to take some sort of hit – but how much of one? What do I need to lose? How much can I keep? At the moment I’m holding my scythe and wondering where to swing it…

Writing Bubble

15 thoughts on “something’s gotta give – #WhatImWriting

  1. Carie @ Space for the Butterflies

    Oh I know how you feel in wanting more hours in the day – and if you ever find them let me know!! I know I would have more time to think and to write non-blog writing if I didn’t write blog posts but I also like writing blog posts and I think it helps to keep me writing and keep my hand in while I’m in the season of life of small children and not much spare time – it’s all a question of bringing it all together as an integrated whole but easier said than done!!
    Carie @ Space for the Butterflies recently posted…My little adventurerMy Profile

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    1. Maddy Post author

      I’ve found blogging brilliant for precisely that in the past – it’s kept me writing when otherwise I would have just dropped off the sofa with exhaustion! I think I’m just moving into a different phase now, and it’s trying to work out how blogging fits into that. Thanks for commenting, Carie. xx
      Maddy recently posted…What I’m writing – week seventy-nineMy Profile

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  2. Alice @ The Filling Glass

    Maddy, I’m in exactly the same boat (except for the viral post/massive campaign). I have reached the conclusion I have to blog less (and be more focused about it) to write more and have family life the way I want and need it to be. Balance is the key, and finding it is a trick. Good luck lovely lady.
    Alice @ The Filling Glass recently posted…Making bedtime calmer with relaxationMy Profile

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    1. Maddy Post author

      Yes, balance is indeed the key! I need to back away from blogging enough to give me more time to focus on other things but not so much I lose it entirely… because I do find it motivates me to write! Thanks, Alice. Hope your change in approach is working for you. xx
      Maddy recently posted…What I’m writing – week seventy-nineMy Profile

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  3. Mummy Tries

    I can feel your pain coming through the laptop here Maddy, want to reach into it and give you a huge hug! Only you know the answer my lovely. As for me, and everyone is of course different, stepping back from the blog helped me focus on my novel (65k words now written). It also makes me a better, less irritable parent, because my kids absolutely hate it when I’m messing around on my phone in their time #justsaying xxx

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  4. Jo Winwood

    Good grief Maddy, I could have written this! I’m so far behind with my writing and so un-focused that I’m starting to despair. Time to give myself a good talking to I reckon!
    Jo Winwood recently posted…Lightbulb MomentMy Profile

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    1. Maddy Post author

      Sorry you could identify, Jo – it’s one of those times when I hope, for my writing friends’ sake, they will go ‘no, that’s not where I am’. Kind of nice to have to solidarity though, regardless, and hopefully we can help motivate each other ! xx
      Maddy recently posted…What I’m writing – week seventy-nineMy Profile

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  5. Dana

    Maddy, I’m with the compassionate ladies who’ve already chimed in, I feel your pain and like Renee said, only you know the answer about what to do. Blogging as a writer is tricky because it IS time consuming and yet it can, and often is, quite fulfilling and yet time consuming and often at the detriment to other kinds of writing. I go easy on myself regarding blogging, and may take the summer off. If by fall I’m in a momentum with my book, I may continue my hiatus. I can only imagine the time that goes into this linky and regular blogging and I hope you know whatever your decision, your writing and reader friends here (like me and I suspect many more) will understand and support you. The ones who don’t, well, so be it. You can’t please everyone and accomplish your goals and be a present loving parent and partner.

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    1. Maddy Post author

      Thanks for this lovely reply, Dana. I think you have the right approach to blogging – you’ve always struck me as a writer first and a blogger second (well, perhaps I should put ‘mother’ first but you know what I mean). I started that way and used to post loads of creative writing on my blog so being a blogger and a writer were one and the same thing. These days though, I barely post anything creative and blog way more than I write and which feels wrong… and then I REALLY want to draw too. There must be a balance somewhere. xxx
      Maddy recently posted…What I’m writing – week seventy-nineMy Profile

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  6. Antonia

    This post is true for me too. I guess the things I’ve found helpful in the past … and should look at again for myself … are making priorities and also picking what I don’ t need to do right now. There are some things that are important but that can be done next month, or next year. After last summer where I had to write my dissertation, this summer I can choose to put my novel in a box and come back to it in September. I still need to write – that’s important for my sanity – but I can take time out from big writing and just be a bit more random, which may or may not include blogging! HTH
    Antonia recently posted…What I’ve been writing this week #whatimwriting @writingbubbleMy Profile

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    1. Maddy Post author

      You’re right, it’s so sensible to properly prioritise! I think I’m stuck in some sort of thinking where blogging takes priority because there’s a weekly schedule to it – my linky, other people’s linkies etc that I feel I need to conform to. But I let it take precedence when it shouldn’t. There must be a better way. Thanks for commenting, Antonia. xx
      Maddy recently posted…What I’m writing – week seventy-nineMy Profile

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  7. Teika Bellamy

    I totally hear you! Me too (though not so much with blogging – but with so many other things) and like you said, it’s about cutting back on what isn’t important and admitting what really is. Sending hugs. xx

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  8. Sophie Lovett

    Ah I can so identify with this – I reached a bit of a crisis point with my blog towards the end of last year, where it all just felt like such a waste of time & I was having real trouble justifying it to myself! I feel like I’m in a bit of a better place right now, but mainly because I’ve stripped things right back and made my blog a conduit for reflecting on the things that are most important to me – i.e. writing and parenting, with a bit of education thrown in! The whole #THISislearning thing was a bit of a curveball – it was so tempting (still is a bit…) to throw myself into the ongoing education debate wholeheartedly, but it would mean that everything else would need to remain on the back burner, and ultimately that’s not the way round I want things to be! I really hope you find a better balance for yourself. If it’s any help, having considered at various points stopping blogging completely, I have now resolutely decided that for now at least it’s a really vital part of my interaction with the world, and enhances my writing and parenting as much as it takes my focus away from them. I just need to be ever-mindful that it doesn’t take over… xx
    Sophie Lovett recently posted…Astronauts and alligatorsMy Profile

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