• G R Matthews

Question 10: Kitvaria

Kitvaria asked this question, number 10, about finding the time. It is never easy! (Note the careful 8 minutes past 10 on the watch - there is a reason for that... according to QI anyway).


Hi, my question is - how do you manage to do all of the above mentioned things, and still find time to write? Do you have a daily goal of words, or simply get whatever little time left into writing? (thinking of an Interview with Rothfuss I attended in spring, and his utter annoyance of people asking when book three will finally be out...)


Hi Kitvaria,

I have a full life :) All that and my family take up a lot of my time - none of it wasted at all.

Luckily, I married an understanding (if occasionally short-tempered (she is a red head, just like Ce'Nedra... wonder if there is a link - recalling an earlier question)) woman who, when I started writing gave me the space and time to do it.

I did the NaNoWriMo years ago - I needed a goal, a deadline, some extrinsic at that time, to push me, to challenge me. I wanted to know if I could do it - could I write a novel (or 50,000 words of one) in a month? Could I get past that dreaded chapter 5 when inspiration and effort waned? We agreed that month was writing month - see if you can do it. All my day work was done at work - almost unheard of in my career - for that month and in the evenings, after the children were in bed, I wrote and wrote and wrote - every night. What an experience! I loved it - I loved the pressure, the deadline, the creativity, everything!

Since then, since knowing I could do it, I have kept on doing it. Not at that pace - it isn't practical for me or my work or family. I use writing software, Writeway, which allows me to organise my book chapter by chapter, scene by scene, to make notes, to hold my research (though I also use pinterest and excel for this). It also allows me to set targets and measure myself against them in a nice bar chart... or if I fall behind a not-so nice bar graph. Most importantly, it does not spell check or grammar check my work - I correct those I notice as I go, but the rest are ignored until the editing - and that is so freeing! That little red wavey line of shame is entirely missing!!

At one of the Grim Gathering's Myke Cole relayed a maxim, "The sea doesn't care", from his own line of work. Meaning if you truly want to do it, stop making excuses and find the time to do it. He works a lot of jobs and finds time to write. Mark Lawrence has his own challenges to his writing time and yet gets it all done - if those two can do it (alongside all the others), I can never complain just count myself lucky.

And I do, almost every day... though if the lottery ever comes in, I'll count myself even luckier!

Thanks for the question!

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