The following was created in response to a post on Teacher’s Write, a virtual summer writing camp for teachers and librarians around the world. This generous opportunity is created and organized by Kate Messner.
Today’s Teacher’s Write mini-lesson involved acquiring time to write. After reading her post, I was torn between with the idea of committing to the idea of setting time aside to write vs. working on my writing process so that the time I do spend on writing is productive. Summer Writing Camp Director, Kate Messner, validated how busy we all are. There simply isn’t enough time in the day to do everything we need or want to do. Our work is never done. Her encouragement for establishing a healthy writing habit for her campers is focused around evaluating what he or she can give up. I think my biggest obstacle is that when I’m feeling overwhelmed, my first instinct is to shut down. To combat this, I desire balance. One day I will unlock the secret balance between home, school, friends, and hobbies. Until then, I choose to give up stress that causes me to (usually) lose myself on the Internet. The fact is that even with balance, there are priorities.
It is easy to make writing a priority in the summer. It is made even easier on the days that I am involved in the U of I Writing Project. The day always starts with an hour of writing time. I feel I can commit to that hour 5 days a week even after the UIWP Summer Institute. The school year is a different story. I am not going to pretend to set up a consistent time to just write. The non-negotiables I will work with at that time include the following (in no particular order):
dinner at the table (my favorite time of the day)
regular walking/bike rides
Friday “field trips” with (adult) friends after school
Wizard games on Saturdays
football on Sundays
some social networking/emailing
weekly Skype calls with family and friend
house cleaning/yard work
(I will make a promise to look at my priorities when school starts back up.)