Coming out of university this year, I was suddenly stuck with responsibilities of actually being a grown up, and grown ups need jobs. So I got myself a part time job in marketing, a little divergent from my degree of photography, but I quite enjoy it nonetheless. But what about writing? How do you write and adult at the same time?
Lucky for me, I can write on the days I’m not working, but for a lot of people working full time it may not be that easy to say “write when you get home/before you go in”. Having a full time job, even one where you sit at a desk, can be as mentally draining as it is physically. So how do you write as a hobby, if your world is already so full?
Keeping your mind active is the biggest struggle for me, especially after a long day. When all my creativity is drained and I have nothing more to give, it can be hard to see where my sort is going.
When I was in school, I like to write songs and poetry, coming home nearly everyday with a new idea I had been scribbling down in my notebooks. I think this is where I learned what worked well for me, how to keep my creativity and do my responsibilities at the same time.
- Bring a notebook with you to scribble any ideas you might think of during the day. You may not think of anything, or you may find yourself planning a whole novel, but either way, having a note book on hand to capture those thoughts will help keep the inspiration alive. Looking back after school or work will trace your mind back to your world, they’ll always be something to write about.
- Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to write everyday. I know myself that I can be very determined to work towards goals, trying to make myself write everyday to do it. The truth however, is that sometimes you just won’t be able to. Life happens, things get in the way, and that means writing can slip. Go easy on yourself if you let it go for a few days, as long as you have your notebook to keep track of your ideas, you can always come back to it when your mind is ready.
- Writing as a hobby means it should be fun, so don’t make it another chore for you to do. If you use your writing as an escape, creating your own world to live in, or if you dream of becoming a full time author one day, you are still writing because you love it. If you don’t love it, it’ll show. Either your writing won’t have soul, or you will just end up not writing anything. The last thing you want to do is get to that stage, so remember why you want to write, and out your heart into doing it. It may take you a little longer, but that’s perfectly OK. There’s no rush. Do it because you want to, not because you have to.
We all have to start from somewhere, and if you aren’t a celebrity, nobody’s going to walk up to you and offer a million pound book deal before even seeing your work. But if your writing is just at the hobby stage, you’ve got something even better, the freedom to write at your own free will, and that can be the most precious gift of all.
Best wishes on all your endeavours,