Writing and Parenthood

As a stay-at-home father I had often thought that I would have ample time to write. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Some days are wonderful power house productions where I can complete some house work, attend to my daughter’s needs, and get some writing done. Most days that doesn’t happen. The want is there-and the need too, but when you sit down to write or edit and your daughter is ready for her snack, or needs to potty, or wants juice, or can’t find a particular toy, or wants to paint, or…you get the picture.

Interruption is non-stop and once frustration hits a certain point writing becomes futile. The biggest answer I’ve found is having a writing schedule. Typically my brain is rumbling late at night, but time can vanish quickly and going to bed at 3 a.m. and waking up to take care of a small human being isn’t the best option. I’m totally not a morning person, but I’ve been attempting to learn to become one.

Sticking to schedules can be difficult as well. It takes time. Studies have shown that after several weeks something clicks in and it allows a habit to form. The key is once it becomes habit, stick to it. This can also be difficult. Now that I have finished my novel and let it rest (and done some traveling with the family) I have found the habit shredded. And so the process begins again.

I’m but a novice at all of this at the moment, but every step of the journey is a new lesson. In a lot of ways it’s like parenthood-we learn as we go. Some things we learn fast. “Don’t do that!” And other times it’s a process that takes a lot of effort. The writing process can be like a child. It needs to be nurtured, trained, and made presentable to society. It takes time and love and patience. Eventually it’ll grow and be out on its own and, hopefully, contribute to society.