Most pre-published writers can't quit their day jobs (whether at home or outside the home). Instead we have to squeeze our writing time into an already full schedule.
We have to make sacrifices in order to carve out more writing time. Hence, guilt.
In Pilgrim's Progress, Christian started his journey with a heavy burden on his back. For a long time he ran with the pack slowing him down. But then he came to a Cross, where the burden loosened from his shoulders and fell from his back.
As Pilgrims on the path to publication, we can also can stop at the foot of the Cross and let go of our burdens of guilt:
Here are a few ways I've cut loose the straps of guilt at the Cross:
- Plan Family Time: Schedule weekly time to do something together as a family and with individual family members. We have Family Night every Sunday evening which consists of a game or movie, and a Bible study together. I also have a weekly Tea Time with my daughters where we sit down together, talk about girl issues, read a discipling book, and then work on crafts. When we get busy, we know we have our special time to look forward to.
- Limit Outside Activities: Pick what's really important and don't add more no matter how tempting. We've had to learn how to set boundaries and say no to really good activities, even though they look fun (even church activities). We try to stick with extracurriculars that the majority can do together. Then we can maximize the time we're running out and leave more time to be at home.
- Share Responsibilities: Everyone who lives in a house should share in the household responsibilities. 2 Thes. has the principle that whoever doesn't work, doesn't eat. We try to make most household work a group effort, especially cleaning up meals and Saturday morning cleaning. The work goes much faster and then everyone has more free time.
Carving out writing time is incredibly difficult, but if we're diligent we can find more time without feeling guilty about it.
More guilt-freeing ideas tomorrow.
P.S. Make sure you stop by Rachelle Gardner's blog today http://cba-ramblings.blogspot.com/. She has an excellent post about the LONG journey to publication.