M.A. Wohl

Writer on a Quest

Right on time.

Kiddo woke up two minutes after me this morning. At 4:30 am.

My first thought was : « see you never, peaceful morning writing session ».

My second thought was for the remaining 30 days of quarantine the whole province still has to go through.

As for my third thought, it went something like: « or you figure this out, or you will never-ever finish that book ».

Soooo… writing from home because you can’t physically go anywhere else with young kiddo: a pandemic How-To.

No normal

Ok. First thing first. I sat down in order to have a little discussion with myself and my writing goals.

First realization was that I had to accept one very crucial thing: Nothing is normal no more. Nothing is sure.

The world of yesterday’s is not coming back. Or at least, not the way it used to be.

Sending my manuscript by the end of June is a great writing career goal… if any of the publishers I want to submit the manuscript to are still open for business that is!

The most important thing is to write the best story I can. And finish writing it before the end of April.
Because I was supposed to be finished by the end of March, and that did not happen, despite me waking up to write at 3:00am for two weeks.

Wanting to go back to that, like I said in a recent post, is pretty unrealistic. Since I have a young kid who rises early, and is very demanding, as every young kid is.

Realistic strategies to write more during a full-on quarantine with a young kid

It’s been three weeks here (already!). I tried various things to try to get more than two writing session a day, a nap time writing session and an evening writing session.

My favorite thing to do was waking up very early.
I really enjoyed waking up at 3:00 am. Somehow, it was really good for my morale.
I had time for me, time for the words, even time to plan the day. Sometimes, I would even find writing partners via a live write-in!
There’s something about being awake when everybody else is asleep that’s very peaceful.

But, I crashed after a week or so of that regiment. I do want to go back to it. Of all the things I tried, is the one that worked the best, for everyone. Although for now, my body is simply saying: no way.

Here’s other strategies I tried the past few weeks.

  • Keeping the laptop on the dining room table, with the manuscript ready.
    Result: failure. Kiddo wanted to look, wanted to play, wanted the world as soon as I would sit down. And if I convinced the kid to play without me for a while, questions will come raining my way before long.
  • Keeping a notepad, notebook at the ready.
    Result: kiddo did grab the thing once or twice, but it’s overall good for when an idea comes by, but I can’t really sit down and work on a chapter, for example.
  • Getting help from life-partner
    Result: it works! When he can help during the weekends, and only the weekends, he does. I can then have full three-four hours of writing time in the morning. Thing is: it’s not set in stone, and the planned writing session, or me-time, might get « canceled » on very short notice, causing disappointment and some tensions.

What I’ve learned, what I have to remember is, in my case anyway, counting on a firm writing routine to achieve writing goals is not possible at the moment.

Gotta have to be creative and try to take advantage or every moment I can dedicate to the words.

Until next time, fellow writers, thanks for reading.

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