I have this issue that I need to find a way to get past. I tend to focus on one type of writing and leave the others on the shelf to get dusty.
I've always had this problem. Well, since graduating school, anyway. In my school years I had to write whatever I was assigned, and it was never a problem, which means it's just ridiculous that I have a problem now.
You see, I wasn't getting any fiction writing done when my son was itty bitty. Instead, I was blogging for "pay" as a mom (my blog was Not a Test Tube Baby, which no longer exists) and writing non-fiction articles for Helium. I made some money doing that, which was great. Far easier than making money writing fiction, at least at this stage for me. I was also taking college courses during this time, and writing papers for those.
Fast forward to when I went to my first conference and promptly threw myself into fiction writing, the kind I really enjoy. I stopped writing the non-fiction (which also, currently, means I stopped getting paid for my writing).
I didn't realize I'd stopped it until I was blog hopping the other day and came across a post where the blogger said they were stuck writing poetry right now, because they could only focus on one kind of writing at a time. Zoinks! That's what I've been doing!
Not only that, but I tend to either be writing on short fiction or novels. I have a hard time juggling when to write what. Should I sit down and write an article so I can get paid? Should I work on a short story and submit that sucker so I can get my name out there? Or should I continue working on my novel? What about editing? No, I'll do this. No, this. This. Argh!
So how does one juggle when to write what? How do you split your time between short fiction, novel and non-fiction? I like to write it all, but I just can't find the time or a way to split up what little time I do find.
I will say that I've reached a semi-happy medium between short fiction and my novels. On Tuesdays I host a write-in at Pikes Perk, a coffee house in town (all are welcome, so if you live around here and want to go, let me know!) I'm there for a little less than two hours, and I spend that time working solely on short stories. I'm not allowed to work on my novels or editing, because I said so.
Later that day, I take my daughter to gymnastics. This involves sitting in a waiting room with a bunch of other parents, several of them quite obnoxious, so my son and I put ear buds in and listen to music, him while doing homework and me while writing. Again, I limit myself to writing short fiction only at this venue.
I like to work on my novels on one specific computer. I don't like to do bits and parts elsewhere, though I did do a little snippet from my current WIP at an improv writing I attended, and the Earth did not open up and swallow me. Nor did buildings collapse around me. Funny.
So, tell me, do you have the juggling act down? How do you decide what to write and when? Do you write what comes to mind at any given time, or do you schedule in writing time for the different arenas?
May you find your Muse.
Both images courtesy of OCAL at clker.com.