Setting a Course for Writing – Making Time


This morning I sat at a coffee shop and watched two tables of women in writing groups. I noticed lots of talking, little writing and no real talk about their own words. They shared books by writers (Bird by Bird, etc.) but like me they avoided the real work – writing.

I have spent years writing little bits here and there. Lots of stories started. Most of them not finished-ending are hard your know. Well, truth be told all of it is hard. Writing takes work! And it is easy to avoid the actual work.

I have used lots of excuses-the big one was always I am teaching- just don’t have time to finish that story. I will do that when I retire!

Well guess what – I retired! Yes, I am working part time to help out a teacher but really time is no longer the issue. (To be honest it probably never was.) Like the ladies this morning they had time to meet over coffee while each stated why they didn’t have time to write.

If we really want something we make time for it.

I really want to make my blogs work so I make time for it. In March I write my Slice of Life every day no matter what. I make time for it.

Somehow I find time. So really it come down to what?

Fear is my guess. There is that little voice that keeps saying you can’t do this! Even though I spend everyday telling students that they can.

“You just need to take one step at a time. Get your thoughts on paper. We will come back and polish later.” I watch my students do just that.

They write and write and write – they don’t really care if they have miss spellings, or sentence fragments, and sometimes they have no idea where they are going with their story but they write.

I can’t be the ladies talking about writing at the coffee shop, or the friend who as read every book about writing you can find but still has not written. I know also that this is at least the second time on this blog that I have written about needing to make time to write.

It is now time to set my direction, open my sails (the great writers notebook) and begin my journey into the great sea of words. No more reasons for why I can’t finish that story or write that informational blog post.

Today begins the day of daily writing – I am not waiting until the new year, or the next writing challenge or the next time I retire.  It needs to be now!

My dog story that my students finished two weeks ago and is still sitting unfinished in my notebook is waiting. ( My students are waiting as well for my story to end.)

It must get done this week.  It is one page at a time, one story at a time. Just go write!



About Joanne Toft

I am a retired Minneapolis Public School teacher. I walk, garden, care for my Grandson and write. Life is good!
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6 Responses to Setting a Course for Writing – Making Time

  1. marykatbpcsc45 says:

    I love your inspirational words. We are sharing a journey of just writing. I too am a retired educator. Great to meet you.

    Mary-andering Creatively

    Mary-andering Among the Pages

  2. Good luck with your daily writing! Like you, I keep saying I don’t have time, but I know it is just an excuse. We do make time for the things we want. Am I willing to give up reading Facebook to write? I bet there’s half an hour a day I could write.

  3. Dana Murphy says:

    Yes! You can do it! Just write!

  4. Leigh Anne says:

    Don’t you wish we could sometimes tell that “little voice” to just be quiet! I wish you all the best in your new daily goal! Just write!

  5. elle1955 says:

    Writing begets writing. You will do it.

  6. Kate Schwarz says:

    I follow a blog by Marion Dane Bauer, a children’s book author (both picture books and middle school age books). Her words are always amazingly poignant, like she knows what I need to hear. Just this morning she wrote about the importance of rituals, of setting the time to write. It think you’ll like what she says (and she says it well)!

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