If you’re truly serious about making it as a writer, you’re going to have to prioritize your writing, just as you would need to prioritize your workouts if you want to make the Olympics.
All art requires sacrifice. If you don’t give your art an important place in your life, art won’t place any importance on you either. You have to put in the time and effort any work requires in order to get ahead.
As with any art, showing up is the most important gesture, like a lover who professes his undying devotion by chasing after his beloved. Just like in love, we have to go through the pleasures and the pangs of art; it’s a part of the process any true artist must learn to enjoy. When you’re writing, you’re writing— and all else be damned!
Life can be chaotic, at best. We’re all human beings, we have worldly errands and needs— I get it. I myself struggle constantly to avoid getting sucked into the maelstrom of mundanity. We all have errands to run, taxes, rent and bills to pay, relationships to maintain and so on, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make a conscious effort to make writing a priority in your life. You might get invited out by your friends, your significant other may ask you to wash the dishes, your mom is having a fit because the cat threw up on the rug— there are a million scenarios where you can end up not writing and only one where you do and that’s when you decide to plunk yourself down and pay your dues.
There will always be an excuse for you to not sit down and write. Resistance is a cunning seductress, she knows how to play your weak spots against yourself. You have to consciously choose to sit down and write.
If you try to organize your life around your writing, it’s easier to find the gaps in between the comings and goings of life when you can truly give your all to your art. Maybe it’s early in the morning before going to work at your desk job. Maybe it’s in the evenings after the children have gone to bed. Maybe it’s on the weekends. Whatever works best for you is the answer. As long as you have a clear intention to make time in your life for your art, writing will always be there waiting for you with open arms.
We creatives tend to be undisciplined and scatterbrained. It’s a part of the creative process. It’s here where we can benefit from a bit of order and discipline to help materialize the images, plots, characters, and stories that wreak havoc in our minds unless transferred to the security of a blank page.
Make time for what’s important for you, that’s what life is for. If writing is important, it should have a place in your life.