I continue to be in awe of you parents out there who manage to carve out time for your writing and illustrating in the midst of taking care of children, household chores and (in some cases) a day job as well.
At a recent conference, several working parents told me how they were still struggling to find the time to write and illustrate.
Having no children myself, I can't offer practical advice, but here are some online resources which might help. If you can offer tips from your own experience or know of other other helpful resources, please do post them in the comments below. Thanks!
Some inspiration: Cynthia Lord wrote her first book, Rules, between 4-6 in the morning, every morning. "I have a son with autism and our days have always been full of his schedule and his needs." Her book ended up winning a Newbery Honor! More via Kate Messner's blog.
RESOURCES AND TIPS:
Finding Time To Write - Parents' Version - by Julie Duffy on StoryADay.org. Main tips: coordinate your work sessions with your kids' energy levels, work to an outline, stretch sessions when you can, sit where you can hear your kids, be willing to stop after 2-3 sessions.
Finding Time To Draw - On Step, Skip, Pause. Main tips: Work in the early morning before everyone else is up. Sketch while watching tv, while waiting, on the public transport, at friends' houses, in short snatched moments, at concerts and plays.
Writing and mother: how I (sort of) do both - Shannon Hale explains how she does it. Main tips: Enlist help, constantly reevaluate your balance, set priorities, take a day of rest, commit fully, separate writing from publishing.
Busy Moms Write - A blog by Marcia Fowler, who is a mom of two boys, a freelance writer, and a certified elementary school teacher and reading specialist. "Busy Moms Write is a blog to inspire other moms to finally sit down and write, even if it’s only for five minutes a day."
11 Ways Stay-At-Home Moms (and Other Busy Folks) Can Find Time To Write - by K.M. Weiland. Be stubborn and endure, find your focus, connect with family every day, remember there are others in your boat, take your work seriously, it's never too late to start, be realistic in your goals, give up on the idea of trying to please everyone, enjoy your blossing career guilt-free, being a mom and writer are not mutually exclusive.
How Busy Writers Can Stay Productive & Keep Their Sanity - by Jeff Goins. Give up the ideal workspace, don't sacrifice your family, use the "write, edit, write" method (longer pieces) and self-edit method (shorter pieces), know your limits, stay positive and grateful.
A Parent's Time To Write - by Liz Boltz Ranfeld. Prioritize, know what can and can't be done, get up early, ask your partner for help, create a specific writing space but be flexible, carve out time at work to write, let your kids know how important your writing is.
How To Find Time When You're A Busy Mom - on WikiHow. Be prepared, cut down on tv viewing, help your kids understand, adjust your sleep patterns and get up earlier, get the children involved, always carry a notebook, use multiple writing tools or resources, persevere.
Finding Time To Write - by Moira Allen. Treat time as an investment and figure out your "time budget," examine your priorities, eliminate time-wasters, teach others to respect your time.