Finding the Time

Let’s hear it for the poets who write regularly and with consistency, for this is no small feat. Consider the challenges that have to be faced and managed. Time for instance.

On one hand, there are poets whose lives are such that they essentially find themselves with large blocks of unstructured time with which to fill. They must be organized, disciplined, and committed to segmenting part of their day, ideally every day, to their writing life. This requires thoughtful planning and scheduling. 

These poets undoubtedly exert much effort to remain committed to a regular writing practice despite opportunities to do otherwise. They must remain steadfast against distractions that may make them question why they choose to spend hours per week wrangling with words while in the outside world, there appears to be a whole lot of more active living going on daily. But for a writer, writing is living, is life, yes? Of course!

Temptations abound,  yet writers who are solely responsible for carving out and maintaining blocks of time to write deserve our respect for staying the course. They are clearly diligent and committed. We salute you!

On the other hand, there are those poets whose daily lives are so heavily scheduled with work and other obligations that their time is simply not their own. Add commuting and basic needs like eating, exercising, and sleeping, and the entire idea of blocking off time to write seems nearly impossible. But we all know, it can be done. 


“…if we really love something we will go out of our way to make time for it in our lives.”

Poets living this lifestyle, must be vigilant in picking up and utilizing those, “dropped minutes” in between appointments, meetings, and station stops by having Moleskin pads, digital recorders, or online notebooks at the ready, to jot down a good line or two, as needed. These poets must utilize whatever free time presents itself within a day and they must be ready for it. By ready, I mean having immediate access to a charged phone and whatever pens, notebooks, and online resources are needed to keep their writing practice active. 

Having a flexible attitude helps too. Poets living heavily scheduled lives must accept that maybe some weeks they will be writing late at night, while during other weeks, they will be writing only on early weekend mornings. When life becomes especially hectic, these poets need to be ok with some inconsistencies in their writing practice. 

Let's be serious. No one person can do every thing well. And poets who are going through life phases that require them to be a lot of things to a lot of people, will need to prioritize and be patient with themselves and their writing practice.

If the writing is important, the time-challenged poet will figure out a way to make it part of their ever-shifting, heavily scheduled lifestyle. When all is said and done, poets living this lifestyle require resiliency and commitment.  They also need to be resourceful and persistent in order to maintain some semblance of a writing practice while trying to balance everything else.

Again, it can be done. Kudos to the writers in this group!

Writing is hard work, but for most of us, it is a labor of love. And we all know that if we really love something, we will go out of our way to make time for it in our lives. No doubt. 

~Judith Lagana