I work two full time jobs.
Yes, two. With my day job I work Monday through Friday and occasionally a bit of weekend work. My days run anywhere from 10-12 hours. I expect the occasional day off. Weekends. Holidays. Time to slow down and reconnect with my family and friends.
My second full time job is writing. Those weekends and holidays I get off from the day job? Those are my writing days. Nights, early mornings, weekends, holidays.
So how can I work down time with that? Most would schedule a holiday every now and then where you don’t do either job. I can’t do that.
So what do I do? I take Saturday off from the day job and Monday off for my writing job.
Time OFF? But you should be writing every waking second, every single moment. Snatching every single second for writing! Why are you taking TIME OFF?
I laugh because two years ago I was that person asking those questions.
Time and a few nice bumps in the road taught me this: you have to take time away or else you see nothing but the tunnel you’ve created. Life can’t get in. Friends can’t find you. My family needs me. They need me to make cupcakes and nachos. We need bad movie night and skatepark car pool. Why?
Being in Turkey for 15 months without my family taught me some very valuable lessons. You can have infinite time to write. Perfect quiet. A desk you set up for just you. The right candles, music and ambiance yet still miss the most important thing in the world…plain old affection and silliness.
So Monday night is my writing night off. My husband knows it. My kids know it. I usually cook up something silly on Mondays and watch bad TV. Saturdays I write like crazy and turn off my cell phone so the day job can’t interfere. Then I take the kids out to a place (free youth centers are awesome!) and do some writing while they play and have fun.
If you don’t experience life, how are you going to write about it? I finally get it.
Having a break at least once a week gives me a chance to start the new week without feeling guilty over the last one.