writing warriors #4

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It’s Friday – it’s Writing Warriors day! I’m loving joining in with Stephanie’s linky every Friday. Blogging about how my writing week has gone is really helping to clarify some of my thoughts, and I’ve been setting myself challenges which feel like they’re helping me get somewhere. I’m not quite sure where yet but I’m just enjoying being ‘on the journey’ at the moment. Reading about other people’s writing experiences is really thought-provoking too and I’ve got into some really interesting discussions off the back of them.

So, how has this week gone?

  • Last week I set myself an ongoing challenge to write a limerick over the weekend, using my sons’ and husband’s ideas as inspiration. I’m going to be posting them on Mondays. I posted the first of them this Monday. It is full of terrible rhymes and would not win any prizes for great literature but it was fun to write and I felt quite chuffed to have produced it. The challenge continues…
  • After writing my post last week I also set myself the goal of writing a short piece of prose. Basically because it’s something I never do: I tend to write poetry or short stories. Anything under 1500 words is highly unusual so I thought it would be a good  thing to have a go at. I published it in a post yesterday linking up with #Prose4T. I was quite pleased with it, in a way. It’s not my usual prose style though, in fact I felt myself going into poetic mode as I was writing it. I’d like to try writing something short that is less whimsical. A new challenge!
  • Having decided it was unsustainable keep going with the two hours a day of creative writing (over and above blogging) I’d managed last week, this week I tried just one hour. With slightly surprising results. In some ways it was much easier to find the time, just because I needed to find less of it. And most days I succeeded. But, funnily enough, without the strict discipline of insisting I wrote for two hours a day, I found myself slipping. I didn’t use my time as well. I faffed about on facebook. I spent more time blog hopping unnecessarily. Then this morning I realised that yesterday I just forgot to write at all! Well, I was constantly running some limericks over in my head that I’m trying to write for a competition but I never actually sat down and wrote. It was a busy day but I didn’t even make the attempt. Which is weird because I’m usually desperate to write.

I’m not sure quite what to take from this. Do I need to be stricter with myself? I didn’t get as much written this week as last week which is a shame but is that all bad? I got on top of some of the tasks that I’d failed to do last week, spent time with my kids and yesterday, despite the lack of writing I had a nice day and got some other stuff done and got an early night so I guess the day had value in other ways. I feel a bit guilty but simultaneously I think it’s ridiculous of me to feel guilty about it. Maybe I just need to go easier on myself?

When we set ourselves writing goals are they always helpful? Can they put us under unnecessary pressure? Can they make it harder to juggle everything in our lives? Are we giving ourselves something to feel guilty over if we don’t meet them?

Should I just be considering blogging as ‘creative writing time’ or is it useful to keep them separate?

Right, the baby has just woken from his nap so I need to post this. I haven’t got time to organise these questions more coherently!

This week is half term so I’m going to be covered in all three kids all week so I’m not going to set myself any particular challenges apart from the on-going limerick one. I’m just going to be mulling things over. Stephanie’s post this morning was very thought-provoking!

4 thoughts on “writing warriors #4

  1. Stephanie

    I am really glad that you are finding the linky helpful, I am loving your posts and all your interactions on my posts and the posts of others.

    The internet is a good and a bad place when it comes to creative writing. I took facebook off my phone but it still dominates my time too much. Social media is such a time waster. I don’t watch much tv beyond the news but twitter and facebook take up too much of my time.

    I am not sure goals are always that helpful. I think systems can be helpful or routines. So I have a writing routine but I don’t have a goal when I sit down and write, I think that would set me up for failure. I guess it is all about working out what works best for you though.

    As you know I am mulling over the blogging question myself right now!

    Thanks for linking up! x

    Reply
    1. Maddy Post author

      I hadn’t thought of differentiating between goals and routines like that. You could be right. I think one of the problems I have is I really want to write during the day when I have the energy but (bar baby nap time) I have at least one child with me all the time then. In the evenings after the kids are in bed i am free to write but I’m often SO tired! So my natural routine doesn’t fit with my practical situation. I guess this is a familiar scenario for mother/writers though. I’ll figure it out.

      Thanks for commenting and for the linky in general!

      Reply
  2. Sadie Hanson

    I am writing a novel, so my writing goals are important, having said that, I find if I put myself under too much pressure then I don’t write as well. As long as I get something done, I am pleased. Also if I am feeling under the weather, like today, then I don’t bother writing at all – just read, and let the ideas come. Ps. I use my blogs as creative writing time, they are a place for me to continue to hone my skills as a writer, and experiment with all sorts. X

    Reply
  3. Maddy Post author

    Yes, I can see how putting yourself under too much pressure could be counter-productive. I think I’m struggling to fine the right balance – enough pressure to encourage me to find the time to write but not too much that I feel like I fail if I can’t manage it! Your view sounds sensible.

    And reading is great for ideas and just being part of the literary world – I really want to leave myself time to read as well as write!

    I also use my blog for creative writing… just not all the time. Or maybe I do. Maybe it all counts. It’s all writing experience after all. Still mulling over this one. Thanks for commenting Sadie!

    Reply

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