5 Tips to Finding Balance in Your Writing Life

tips, writing, how to, balance

Being a professional writer is great. I love it and I wouldn't want to do anything else. However, one things I've learned is that, as a writer, you need other things in your life besides writing. Having other interests and hobbies will not only enrich your life but it will make you a better writer. Here are 5 tips for finding your work/writer life balance.

1. Don't become a recluse. Writing is wonderful but your family is more important. Don't neglect the people you love or your friends. Set limits on your daily writing time. When you are done, spend time with your family and make them a priority. And don't forget your friends. Writing can be very isolating and you don't want to become a recluse. Make an effort to go to lunch with someone at least once a week, join groups, and get out and meet new people. You need to talk to someone besides your imaginary characters.

2. Find something active to do. I work out every day either with a long walk or with exercise DVDs or both. Given the amount of time I spend sitting and writing, it's important to my health and well-being to find ways to be active. 

3. Find a hobby that doesn't have anything to do with writing. Twice a week I got to Karate lessons. Not only does this help keep me active but during the lessons I'm forced to focus on something other than my stories. When I take the tests for the next belt level, I'm working toward an achievement that I am proud of and that, once again, is not based on my work. It makes me a more well-rounded person.

4. Find a way to give back. I am incredibly blessed to be able to do something that I love every day, and to make money doing it. Another activity I enjoy when not writing is making gift baskets. I have a number of friends, neighbors and family who belong to different charitable organizations. These organizations often hold silent auctions and I love to come up with something creative to donate. Creating gift baskets is not only a great way to be creative but it’s also a fun way for me to give to others and to worthy causes.

5. Read books not in your genre. One thing I love to do is read non-fiction history. While this does help my writing, it has also led to other professional opportunities. I enjoy reading about medical history and I've turned that hobby into different online classes in medical history before 1840 that I teach for various Romance Writers of America chapters. Reading outside your genre keeps your writing fresh and exposes you to other ideas and methods and ways of writing.

I hope these tips give you ideas for making your life, of which writing is a part, more full and enriched. Please check out my books because my characters all have well-rounded lives.

For more life writing life posts click here and here.


Brandi said...

That last one is the most difficult for me. I have a hard time getting out of my go-to genre. I'm usually blessed when I do, though. :) Thanks for linking up with Literacy Musing Mondays.

Bonnie Dani said...

I agree with all of your points. It is so easy to get lost in our stories. I agree too that having a hobby and reading outside of your normal genre is great for inspiring creativity especially when having a creative block. I found you today through the #trafficjamweekend linky.

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