Monday, January 11, 2010

Work First, Play Later

I'm back! I had a wonderful time with my family. Thank you all for asking. :-)

In 2009 my schedule evolved into a blog first/write later kind of thing. It happened that way because my husband began using the computer in the afternoons and evenings for his project, but now that I have a router, my schedule's changing.

It's time to work first, play later. That means I do my chores/errands in the morning, write at naptime, and visit your wonderful blogs in the afternoons and evenings. So if I don't show up in the morning, don't be alarmed (if you even notice, lol). I'm just changing things up.

I'm too exhausted in the evening to write, that's why. During the day I have way more energy to write but at night there's a fifty percent chance I won't do it because I'm so tired.

When's the best time for you to write?

I also need to shout out my awesome crit partner, Linda Glaz! Some of you may have met her at ACFW. She's a wonderful, faithful, knowledgeable lady who, I'm proud to say, just became agented by Terry Burns of Hartline Literary! Woohoo! She deserves this so much and I can't wait to see where 2010 takes her. You can see her glowing pic and funny blurb HERE.


Tabitha Bird said...

Congrats to Linda! Well done!

And I know what you mean Jess about being tired in the evening. I write in the middle of the day when my son naps. And I have also been known to write at night. I am a night owl though. Even when I am tired. :)

Katie Ganshert said...

Congrats to Linda! That's awesome!

I'm SO glad you're back, Jessica! I had a dream last night that I was at my old high school at a varsity basketball game, and you were there. And you came up to me and told me you got an agent and we were jumpting around and all excited. Isn't that totally random?!?! Maybe it's prophetic...not the b-ball game part, but the agent part!

I think your new schedule is very smart!


Jessica said...

Tabitha, I used to be a night owl and will still stay up, but usually I'll read or watch a show. LOL Writing can be too much thinking for me. :-)
Thank goodness for naps, right? LOL

Jessica said...

LOL Katie! That would be pretty cool if it was prophetic. :-) We'll see, right? Heehee!
(I loved going to school sports games!)
I'm guessing you maybe played basketball?

sherrinda said...

Yay for family time! I hope your new schedule works for you and you are productive both at home and in your writing world!

I'm tired at night, but since I work full time, that is when I have to do my writing. I already get up at 5am to have a quiet time, and can't make myself get up any earlier than that!!!!

Glad you're back!

Terri Tiffany said...

I thought of you this morning when I saw the temps up there! RRR! I usually write in the afternoon too after all my housework and errands are done. Can't write at night--too tired!
Welcome back! And YAY for your friend and getting an agent!!

Krista Phillips said...

So glad you had good family time!

Oh, I don't know when I write best, to be honest. Not early in the morning, thats for sure. My brain needs to wake up. I think if I could write at about 9:00 in the morning, that would be great. LOL. But, alas, I can't.

So I usually write at night, because that's the only time I have to do it. I also squeeze in a few hundred words sometimes on my lunch break. A little hear, a little there, it adds up. *sigh*

Jaymie said...

I write better early in the day, but I also do everything better early in the day. By the time I get my chores done, there are days when not much time is left for writing. I probably need to spend some time considering what are actual "chores" and what can be done later in the day. Better prioritizing.

Donna M. Kohlstrom said...

Huge congrats to Linda! Way to go!

I'm a morning writer. Almost as soon as I get up my brain goes fast forward in the writing mode. Tried writing in the afternoon and evening but it's like sludging through molasses in my brain! LOL!

So happy to have you back! You've been sorely missed!!! Hugs!!!

Jessica said...

Sherrinda, wow! That's really early. I admire how all of you with full-time jobs find time to write!

Terri, it's freezing! Worse, our pipes no water. Bleck.

Krista, you're so right. It does add up. I think it's better to be in a flow of a little at a time, then to write big chunks but have gaps where you don't write at all.

Jaymie, prioritizing about chores is a great idea. I had to do that when I had kids. Figure out which ones I can do with the kids awake (folding laundry) and which ones had to wait for after bedtime (mopping). But now, I'm also in the groove of doing some in the morning and saving the rest for the next day, so that my afternoons are free to play. :-)

Thanks for the hugs Donna! :-) You're a morning person, huh? LOL! I can't fathom what that's like. Heehee.

Jody Hedlund said...

Hey welcome back, stranger! (Actually, thanks for popping by my blog last week, even though you were busy. It was nice to see you're smiling face! But I missed your blog!)

Sounds like you have a good plan. I've had to revamp mine too. I've given myself a word count goal in the morning before the kids are up. And I can't read blogs until I meet it. So, no more early morning blogging for me either. I'll have to do it as I'm able during spurts of the morning. It means I won't be able to visit everyone as much! And I'm bummed. But I also know my book is the most important thing right now.

Sarah Forgrave said...

Welcome back! My ideal writing time changes every week. Last week, I planned to get lots of writing done in the evenings since I was out of town for work. But by the time I got to the hotel room, I was wayyyy too tired to even read blogs. :-)

Wendy @ All in a Day's Thought said...

Good to have you back. Congratulations to Linda. I write every possible moment I can. The stuff I need to concentrate for I wait until my kids are in quiet time or evening. It impacts all of us too much if I try to work with them tugging at my feet. I social network and blog stuff then.
~ Wendy

T. Anne said...

HUGE congrats to Linda!!!! SOunds like this is her year for sure. Don't worry about the blog thing, I had to change a few things up myself. I really need to pick up the pace and respond on more blogs and write more, more, more!!!1 Ack. gotta go ;)

soccernut said...

Thanks everybody. How sweet. Now to give you all some GREAT WISDOM to help your writing along. About that'll still be tomorrow, don't sweat it. Just toss the kids a hunk of meat and chunk of bread on occasion and make sure your husband knows where the remote is. Then write your hearts out.

Jessica said...

Ahhh, Jody, that would bum me out too. I'll bet everyone understands though. You just work on that book so that after I'm done devouring your first one I can move onto the second! LOL
Maybe your schedule will change later and give you more time for "play." :-)
(btw, I'm only on because I had to stop vacuuming to eat breakfast, then it's back to work)

Jessica said...

Thanks Sarah! It's good to be back in business. LOL
Isn't that the way it works? I told myself the same thing. "Oh, I'll read these blogs now and I can write tonight." But then we get so exhausted...
I hope your days level out some for you.:-)

Jessica said...

Wendy, so true. I try to do the same thing, mess with my stuff when they're busy. I don't believe in giving in to kids all the time, or making them think they're the only thing that matters, but I do believe they (and hubby, God) matter the most and I would never want to make them feel unwanted.

Jessica said...

T. Anne, I HOPE it's her year! She's one of the hardest working, teachable writers I know. And very smart. Her suspense is goosebumpy sometimes, it's so creepy. LOL
Don't rush too much. You don't want to fall down again. LOL!

Jessica said...

Soccer Nut,
LOL! Thanks for stopping by. If I had TV I'd be happy to toss Hubby a remote. Heeeheee! But...if I don't do some chores today, there'll be more tomorrow. The key is prioritizing, imo.
Hmmm... LOL....I think you've inspired a Wed. post for me! Thanks. :-)

Jessica said...

Oh my gosh!!! LOL!

Soccer Nut, are you Linda! *snort*

You sneaky woman!!!

Danyelle said...

Congrats to Linda!

Yay for you finding something that works better for you. Good luck with your errands, chores, and lovely writing. :D It's good to see you again.

Jessica said...

Thanks Danyelle. :-) It's nice to see you moving around in the blogosphere too.

anita said...

Wow! It's still the morning and look at how many comments you have already! Told you that we missed you. Heh.

Sounds like a great schedule, Jessie! I'm proud of you for putting writing first ... after your family, of course. ;-)

When's the best time for me to write? ANYTIME. I haven't found that I'm any more or less productive one time of day or another. As long as I have a keyboard under my fingers, I'm ready to write. Oh, but I do have a harder time writing when I'm not sitting at home in front of my own PC in my office. It takes longer to get in the wordage on my laptop.

Congratulations to Linda! That's WONDERFUL! What a super way to start the new year. :-D

Eileen Astels Watson said...

Welcome back!!

Congrats to Linda, and I hope your new schedule works really well for you, Jessica!

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Jess -

Welcome back - we missed you!

It's much easier for me to write in the morning when I'm fresh. My energy levels slump in the afternoon, and I need a change of pace to recharge. Writing after 7:00 P.M. ends up with 1) a lot of stuff in the trash or 2) a lot of edits. LOL!

Susan :)

Linda Kage said...

Congrats to Linda! What wonderful new.

And I think you idea of writing first, blogging later, is perfect. I should probably do that because, I rarely get to the later part of my writing day anymore.

Kristen Torres-Toro said...

Hey, Friend! So glad you're back! My blogging schedule will change too once I move... I'll probably be checking in the evenings versus during the day.

The best time for me to write... probably afternoon or evening.

soccernut said...

Thanks everyone for the kind congrats. I appreciate it. Just remember, Jess, as long as the health dept. doesn't shut you down, your housework's fine.
Linda G.

Tamika: said...

Glad you're back Jessica! You were missed. Wonderful news about Linda- this is shaping into a writerly year already.

I admit that I blog before I write too. Big no-no. *Slap hand*
This year I plan on taking the focus off of social networking a bit.

Julie Dao said...

Welcome back, Jessica!! Glad you had a great time with your family :) It's always tough to find time to write, so kudos to you for doing so with your incredibly busy life. My favorite time to write is at night, when it's nice and quiet. Congrats to Linda!

Kathy said...

Good question.

I'm pretty flexible about when I write. It all depends on my energy and motivation. Sometimes I write at night if I have a great idea and I'm excited about it.

Sometimes I don't get a good night's sleep so I'm tired the next day and can't think straight.

Cindy said...

Congratulations to your critique partner, that's awesome!

With kiddos around and a recent change in my hubby's work schedule, I don't have a set time to write. Really, any time works for me as long as I have longer than a few minutes to sit down. I do, however, like to try to work on my novel or plotting or whatever it is everyday so I don't get behind or get out of practice.

Jessica said...

Hey Anita,
Funny about your laptop. I love mine and think it would be really hard to go back to writing on a desktop now.

Thanks Eileen! I hope so too.

Susan, Me TOO. I can write at night though, it's just harder to get started. The perfect time seems like it would be from nine to twelve, or something.

Jessica said...

Linda, it's hard to do but well worth it. Blogging is so fun but it sucks up a lot of time and energy sometimes.

Kristen, I hope your move goes well. :-)

LOL Linda! Health Department? It's my heart that would shut down if I didn't do my chores. LOL Clean floor, clean kitchen, clean bathrooms, those are musts for my sanity. The rest is negotiable. :-)

Jessica said...

Tamika, it seems like it'll be a wonderful year to me too! :-) Quit slapping your hand girlie! You need it to write. LOL

Julie, nice and quiet is key! That's the best time, imo, because we can get lost in our thoughts/writing.

Kathy, what a great point about energy and motivation! So, so true!

Cindy, good for you for jumping on the story whenever you can. I agree about keeping the story in the front of your mind. It's always hard to get back in the groove if the story isn't fresh, I think.

Patti said...

Sounds like a good schedule. I used to write at night then my son started staying up later and I'm too tired now.

congratulations to your friend.

Dara said...

Congrats to Linda!

I don't really have a set time to write. Sometimes I do it while it's slow at work (which is quite often in the winter; not real estate season until spring); other times it's in the late evening, since that's when I'm most awake.

Perhaps I should make a set time for it. That may be why it doesn't get done like it should...

Debra E Marvin said...

Welcome back Jessica! Nice to see things hopping again around here.

Congratulations to Linda. Terry was on my list of three for the ACFW and although I did not get him for my agent interview, he offered to look at my work anyway, when he heard me mention it online. He's such a gentleman and so helpful to anyone.

I get up before dawn now and try to write for an hour or two, then again after dinner. I am super blessed to have this opportunity. It's a God thing, and I'm so thankful.

Nice to see all the regular visitors stopping in. I hope you have a very successful writing year, Jessica!

Janna Qualman said...

Congratulations, Linda!

Jessica, I need to get back into the work first, play later. When I stick to it, it works wonderfully. Here's to us!

Irritable Mother said...

Oh, Jessica, you just nailed me! LOL
Seriously, I need to make dinner for Brian and the boys for tonight, because I am going to be a Elizabeth's play practice. I thought, Oh, I'll read a few blogs first. Then I click over here and see WORK FIRST, PLAY LATER.

As far as the writing, I do much better when I have the house to myself. No distractions, no interruptions. That's the way I like it.

OK, OK. I'm going to put that casserole together right now.

Love you!

ali said...

Sounds like a great plan! I like to write in the afternoon, when the sun pours through my office window and makes me feel alive. :)

Deb Shucka said...

Welcome back! I hope your new schedule works well for you. I'm a morning person and do my best of anything before noon. It's always nice to hear of someone's success.

Jeanette Levellie said...

Welcome Back!

I'm proud of you for the discipline, Jessie. God will honor you for this.

I'm forced to write evenings because of my job, but sometimes I sit at the computer, my brain as perky as a blob, trying to form sentences that make sense. My frequent cry to God is, "Give me words!"

Congrats to Linda. Terry is an awesome agent! Yippee Dippee!

You're next...

Jessie Oliveros said...

Write first, play later should be my new motto. I've been "playing" all day. I need to write. I'm glad you're back and congrats to your friend!

Patti Lacy said...

So glad you are BACK!!! Missed you!

Congrats to Linda!!!

Early morning, when my synapses are firing and while family leaves the house to me and my stories!!!


Jessica said...

Patti, that sounds very nice! Wednesday I'm going to mention your book. :-)

Hey Jessie,
It's pretty tough but at the end of the day leaves me feeling pretty proud. :-)

Hey Jeanette,
I hope my discipline holds! The words were not flowing today, sadly. Your cry is good to make. He's faithful. :-)

Jessica said...

Patti N.
Being too tired to write is such a horrible feeling! I hope he either starts going to bed earlier or you find another time that works for you!

I hope so too, Deb! I get a lot of morning stuff done also. Chores, etc. It kind of makes the second part of the day more enjoyable. LOL

Ali, sun coming in through the window sounds wonderful! Thanks for commenting. ;-)

Jessica said...

Dara, Writing at work??? NICE. LOL I don't think you have to have a set schedule, just a purposeful attitude and an idea of when you might be able to fit it in.

Hey Debra,
Yes, I've heard so many good things about Terry B too! He seems like a super nice guy. Thanks for the nice words about my year. :-) Same to you! And boy, I'm in awe of your discipline with writing! Go you. :-)

Janna, To US! :-)

Karen, that's SO funny! I hope your casserole turned out well. LOL And that you eventually got a chance to play.

Karen Lange said...

I seem to hit my stride in the afternoons after other misc. duties are out of the way.

Have a wonderful week!

Erica Vetsch said...

I'm an afternoon writer. I'd like to be a morning writer, but my son is a morning person, so he's at his best for homeschooling in the morning.

Congrats to Linda for landing an agent! That's wonderful news!

Carla Gade said...

Nice to see you again, Jessica! I hope you had a wonderful time being refreshed and enjoying your family.

I'm a night owl, hands down.

Jessica said...

Carla, I had such an awesome time with them, thanks. :-)

Erica, I forgot you homeschool! Go you!

Karen, I'm like that too. Do better once I know some of my main house goals for the day have been accomplished.

Kara said...

Jessica, I am so glad you had a wonderful holiday! I'm determined to try to write early in the morning, before the kids get up. My husband gets up by 4:30 so I figure I should try to get up with him:)
And I love your new background:)

Nancy said...

Welcome back. I missed you.
I do my blog after work, but before play. It's sort of an "in betweener." I wonder how you answer 54 blogs. That just blows me away. Anyway, I love your joyful personality and I'm ready to hear more from you.

Jessica said...

Kara, WOW. *gulp* 4:30? I hope you'll get a nap in the day. LOL But another blogger gets up that early and writes too. Katie. So it can definitely work. You should let us know how it goes. :-)

Hi Nancy, an "inbetweener". LOL! Love it. Sometimes it's that for me too. :-) You mean how I answer all the comments? Whenever I have downtime is pretty much how I do it. It's almost like a hobby. LOL Plus, I have an insatiable curiosity about other people. And I don't have a full-time, outside of home job. That helps. :-)

(btw, my attitude isn't always joyful but blogging tends to put me in a good mood, LOL) Thank you for your sweet comment.

Warren Baldwin said...

Welcome back.

Best time for me to write - morning or late at night (when everyone else has turned in).

Robyn Campbell said...

Jessica, Oh man! Do I ever feel your pain. I had the same problem and now wake up at 4:30-5:00 a.m. just to write before home-school starts. It's rough and I know more and more writers that are closing down shop. (Their blogs) I don't want to do that though. Blogging teaches me soooo much. I love it. So we each have to make our own way, don't we.

Can't wait to read tomorrow post. :-)

Travis Erwin said...

I write best mid morning but never seem to get free at that time anymore.

Elana Johnson said...

I write at night. I have to. I work during the day, try to do all the blog reading at lunch or immediately after school. Then I have family stuff. When the kids finally go to bed, I write.

It works for me.

And congrats to Linda!

Emily Ann Benedict said...

I agree, it is harder to write in the evening. Coherent sentences just don't come as easily.

Well, good luck with your new schedule. I hope it increases your output. There's nothing like a high word count. :)

Jessica said...

Thanks Emily! The output is the thing, right? LOL Thank you for stopping by. :-)

Hey Warren, thanks for stopping by!

Elana, you amaze me. Seriously. Every working mom and dad who write and blog, they amaze me.

Travis, that stinks. I hope you get some free time soon, or maybe a new schedule. :-)

Robyn, I know about the blogging thing and having to close down. I don't want to do that at all either, so I have to find a way to balance the two things I love to do. Although blogging is easier, of course. LOL

Heather Sunseri said...

Congrats to Linda! Yay!!

I do my best writing in the mornings, but that's not always when I have the time to actually sit down at the computer. I'm forced to write when I can find the time. And blogging I squeeze in any time I can which is at odd times throughout the day.

Angie Muresan said...

Sure missed you, Jessica! Glad you're back. I write mornings and afternoons. I prefer evenings though, but my husband wants me to be off the computer between 5 and 9 pm!!! So, I try to oblige.

Irritable Mother said...

Heehee. The casserole did turn out. It was a hit!
And the playing? Well, I still haven't gotten around to that yet. *sigh*

Jessica said...

Yum, Karen! I hope by now you've had some playtime. Remember, all work, no play... :-)

Thanks Angie! It's good to be back. It's very thoughtful and sweet of you to respect your hubby's wishes. I think God will bless that!

Hi Heather,
Thanks for squeezing me in. I know what you mean. The nice thing about blogs is that you can read/comment on one and then go about your business, then come back and do it again. They can be quick little peeks. (can you tell I've done that alot? LOL)