How To Write Your Book While Working Full-Time

Writing a book is difficult enough. Not only does it take discipline to complete a book, it takes time and attention. The last two are hard to come by if said writer is working a job. Yet, if the person needs to make money because they have to survive in the world then he or she has to work. So how can you accomplish your goal of writing a book and work a job? This easy-to-follow guide explains how to write your book while working full-time.

How To Write Your Book While Working Full-Time: Create A Writing Schedule

The first tip for how to write your book while working full-time is to create a writing schedule. This way you know what little disposable time you can dedicate to your book.

Your schedule is going to depend on a few life circumstances:

  • Your job working requirements
  • Family needs
  • Setting time away for yourself

The first step in creating your writing schedule is to block off time for your job. Then you can pencil in time for writing your book. If you work third-shift then you could slip in a block of time to write after arriving home. Or if you work the first-shift then look into writing in the early evening after eating dinner. That’s what I did when I worked first-shift. I would come home, do whatever chores needed, make/cook dinner, then sit down for an hour or so of uninterrupted writing. Did this always happen? Unfortunately, no. Some days I had an event to attend. Or I came home too tired to write. That’s going to happen to you and you just have to accept it.

Another life circumstance you have to schedule around is your family. Now, if you’re single then this is pretty easy for you. I know it was for me. However, for those who have a family you do need to spend time with them. So you need to slip in time for writing after hanging out with your family. You may have to wait until later in the evening after the kids go to bed. Or maybe you have to get up early in the morning to write before everyone else gets up.

Finally, go forget to give yourself time to relax. I got to the point where I would write and write and get burnt out because I wasn’t taking time off. You can overwork your brain, especially when you are working 40+ hours a week and commuting back and forth.

How To Write Your Book While Working Full-Time: Set Realistic Goals

The second tip for how to write your book while working full-time is to set realistic goals.

I am part of the writing community on Twitter and I see tweet after tweet of writers chiding themselves for not writing 500 words today or 2000 words today. While it’s nice to have goals like this, having a concrete goals like writing X number of words in a sitting can hurt you. How? By putting undue pressure on your writing time. You are already under pressure to meet your goal of completing your book. So when you put more goals on yourself during your short daily writing time you may freeze up. Or you may push yourself into writer’s block. Finally, you may meet your goal of writing a certain number of words but the text is crap. That totally happens.

Instead of doing that set a realistic goal like:

  • Complete the description of your main character today
  • Write the villain’s backstory today
  • Develop the full outline for Act 2 of your book

Final Tip: Stay Flexible

My final tip for how to write your book while working full-time is to stay flexible. I already spoke about this tip a little bit earlier in this article but I want to discuss it further here.

There will be times when you come home from work and you won’t want to write. Maybe you’re tired. Or you’re sick and you just want to sleep. Your family may need more of your time so you need to give it to them. Whatever the reason you need to be fine with not writing that day. Don’t beat yourself up.

And if you can’t adhere to your schedule the next day for whatever reason, that’s fine too. As of writing this post I’ve gone for weeks now not writing any of my books. Not because I’m tired or don’t have the motivation but because I was in the middle of selling my house and moving my stuff. Thus, those items took precedence and not writing. Even now my house is sold I’m still not writing my book because I need to buy a new house and that’s taking up more of my time.

TLDR: Life happens and writing your book will take a backseat. That’s fine. You will restart writing in the future.

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