Why I guard my writing time jealously

If you are the sort of person who enjoys writing—you just enjoy writing. It’s a form of therapy that isn’t optional. You need writing to feel well, both mentally and physically.

Finding the time to write is not always easy when our lives are busy. It doesn’t matter how much or how little time you manage to dedicate to writing, the important thing is that you have time, and regular time, at that. There are stages in our life where we have more or less time for creative pursuits, and we have to accept this.

We have to receive every moment spent writing with gratitude.

I have been a long-term sufferer of fibromyalgia, which is a debilitating, and often misunderstood, chronic disease. I am glad to say that I mostly manage the symptoms using both diet and exercise now, a hard won balance that took me many painful years to master. There were many days when I was in too much pain to think properly, let alone be capable of writing. When I could not write, I fell back onto greater reading—not such a bad compromise, perhaps.

I lost many things during the worst years of my illness, and made many compromises on the life I wanted to live.

I can look back now and see clearly that it changed me in a profound way. I spent a lot of time grieving for what I couldn’t have, couldn’t be, and couldn’t do.

If it taught me anything, it would be a sense of perspective, and of perseverance. It taught me too, that while in many ways I had changed, the part of me that loved the rich, inner, imaginative world of books, remained exactly the same. And this was very comforting.

I never stopped reading.

And I never completely stopped writing.

We all have things that take us away from our writing, some wonderful and some sad.

The important thing is to keep a little of your writing love going, even if you only have a tiny slot, even if you have to stop up until the rest of the house has gone to bed, or rise early, to get your writing fix. Guard your writing time jealously, because if you are a writer, then a writer is who you are, and when life get tough, it may just be the thing that keeps you going. A love of writing is not altered by our age or our situation, or even by the obstacles life throws our way. It is fundamental, and enduring, and it is pervasive to our very core.

Write Better Fiction: Protagonist Point Of View Scenes

Today on Write Better Fiction we’ll cover the Protagonist. Write Better Fiction is a process to help you critique your own manuscript and give yourself feedback. This will help you improve your novel, so you’re ready to submit it to an editor. Check the bottom of this post for links to previous Write Better Fiction […]


How to make your own editing rules sheet

Professionally known as a Style Sheet. I’m not referring to a list of what matches what hanging in your closet. Or the hottest trends from InStyle Magazine.  No, this is a document where you define the writing style and rules that apply to your WIP. Is the style of your WIP American or British English?  Do you use contractions? […]


The 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2016 (Link)

If you are looking for some fresh ideas on writing blogs and sites to follow, here is a great list of suggestions on blogging, the writing craft, entrepreneurship, freelancing, marketing, publishing and writing communities.
>The 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2016

Snow overdose – January 2016 in Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks

I thought given all the snowy pictures everyone is putting up on internet that I would share some of our snowy pictures from the last few weeks when we were travelling to Sequoia and Yosemite national parks. Apparently, they had not had snow this bad in seven years and it unloaded just for our walking holiday! We still managed to get out and about, which was great and some beautiful pictures as a result.

Pass to Yosemite National Park
Pass to Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park
El Capitan, Yosemite National Park
El Capitan, Yosemite National Park
Out walking, Fish Camp, just outside Yosemite National Park
Out walking in snow shoes, Fish Camp, just outside Yosemite National Park
Out walking, Fish Camp, just outside Yosemite National Park
Out walking, Fish Camp, just outside Yosemite National Park
Sequoia National Park
Sequoia National Park
Giant Redwoods in Sequoia National Park
Giant Redwoods in Sequoia National Park. I am the dot at the bottom!
Heavy snow in the Sequoia National Park
Heavy snow in the Sequoia National Park

Is writing a lonely pursuit? #amwriting

Most people who write do so alone. Yes, it’s possible to write sitting in a coffee shop, and in the midst of bustling venues of all kinds, but often, we don’t. Fundamentally, writing is about our innermost thoughts going down onto paper (or its electronic equivalent).

When we write, we step into our head and out of our body, to a place where the real world fades and imagination runs wild.

For all that, writing is not a lonely occupation; at least, it doesn’t feel like one to me. When we write, we become lost in another dimension that is rich with life and people. We step outside the ordinary and seek the extraordinary.

I often wonder at that perception that writers must be lonely; a view perpetuated by many writers themselves through their quotes and comments and interviews.

For me, there is a great difference between being alone and being lonely.


“Writing, at its best, is a lonely life. Organizations for writers palliate the writer’s loneliness but I doubt if they improve his writing. He grows in public stature as he sheds his loneliness and often his work deteriorates. For he does his work alone and if he is a good enough writer he must face eternity, or the lack of it, each day.”

Ernest Hemingway


“Writing is a lonely job. Even if a writer socializes regularly, when he gets down to the real business of his life, it is he and his type writer or word processor. No one else is or can be involved in the matter.”

Isaac Asimov, I. Asimov


“Writing is a lonely job. Having someone who believes in you makes a lot if difference. They don’t have to makes speeches. Just believing is usually enough.”

Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft