I’ve been asked before what my writing schedule is, and my honest answer is, “I don’t have one.” Unlike many of my colleagues, who write five or six or seven days a week, or others who set a word goal of so many words (2000 seems to be the average), I let myself put writing aside when life intervenes in the form of a family need, a special situation, or even a holiday.
This past weekend was no exception. Although I’m in the middle of writing another novel, I took a holiday to celebrate with members of my family. And I’ll bet that I make the deadline my publisher has set, despite not writing for two or three days.
In his book, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey mentions the need to “sharpen the saw.” In my case, I take that to mean that when I reach the point where my brain feels like mush and I can’t for the life of me figure out the next scene in my work-in-progress, I need to take some time to get away from writing. Stephen King, in his book on writing, calls this “letting the boys in the basement work.” I’ve found that I often wake up with the answer to a problem that’s been nagging at me. The boys in the basement have struck again.
So my answer to the question, “Do writers take a holiday?” is “I do.” I can’t speak for other writers, although I hope some of them will chime in here in the comments section.
And to encourage you to speak your piece about all this, I’ll randomly select one commenter to receive a copy of my latest book, Medical Judgment. Just add your email address to your comment to be included. And good luck.
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