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  • Lauren

Writing during the storm ...

My life is in the midst of an upheaval. Thanksgiving seems like it was yesterday, I'm moving with my doggo across the country to start a new job in a town where I don't know anyone, and on top of that, I'm hosting my family for Christmas. As someone who does not support myself with my writing, it would be easy to set it to the side and tell myself I’ll get back to it when everything calms down.

Problem is, if I get out of my daily writing habit, I’m terrified I won’t be able to get back into it.

So how do I write during this storm?

Tip #1 ...

Be vocal about my need to write.

Part of this madness in my life involves visiting family and having them visit during the holidays. In the past, I’ve kept my writing relatively private from them. Now, I still keep the content of my stories to myself, but I’m much better about saying “I’m going to take an hour some time today to write.” Multiple instances over the Thanksgiving weekend, I went to a coffee shop, just me and my laptop. This had the double benefit of giving me time to write and providing my tired introverted brain a break from the crowd of loving family members. I combined writing with self care!

Tip #2 ...

Utilize multiple writing avenues.

Normally, I do all my writing on my laptop, but with me packing for a large move and driving for three days across six states, I can’t guarantee my computer will always be accessible. Plus, a laptop can be cumbersome. Solution? Good old fashioned writing: pen and paper. I don’t need to make sure those are charged, and I don’t have to handle a notebook with the same care as my electronics. If I want to shove it into a bag or the car door, I can!

But sometimes, even that’s too much to deal with. No worries, because there's one item I always have on me: my phone. The Google Docs app is lovely. I literally wrote the majority of this blog post on my phone while my brother took his turn driving.

Tip #3 ...

Forgive myself.

I’m trying to keep up my writing habit, but some days fall through the cracks. When a day passes and I realize I haven't gotten any words down, I don't berate myself. But, I also don't stop planning to write. This has helped me maintain a much healthier mental state during these couple months of crazy. Great example: I planned on having this blog post done by Wednesday. It's Sunday, four days later, and I'm just putting on the finishing touches. And I'm okay with that, because I'm still getting this written! I've forgiven myself.

Have the holidays affected your writing process? Or maybe some other massive life event? What have you done to keep writing during the storm?

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