Being an independent author is one of those jobs that seems universally appealing. Who among us wouldn’t love to be able to spend all our time doing nothing but writing books? Unfortunately, as anyone who has ever tried to make the journey will tell you, it isn’t that easy.
In order to make it as an author, you will first need to find the time to hone and refine your craft. This is also easier said than done, especially with all the commitments and pressures of modern life. But although it might be difficult, it is perfectly possible for anyone with enough determination to make a few simple adjustments to their routine that will leave them more time to write.
While it’s easy to feel like there isn’t enough time in the day to write, and to use this as an excuse for not even trying, the fact is that many of us do have the time, we just use it poorly. The biggest sources of wasted time are things like TV, Netflix, and social media. If you can get into the habit of doing these things less and writing more, you will find your rate of work improving dramatically.
If you already go light on Netflix, social media, etc., consider what things you are turning your attention to instead of writing. There’s nothing wrong with doing stuff other than writing, of course, but if these activities are keeping you from doing the amount of writing you want to, you might need to reconsider how you prioritise your time.
Embrace Different Writing Environments
Most of us have a preferred environment for writing in, but this isn’t always going to be accessible to us. The more mobile you are as a writer, the more opportunities you will have to work on your pieces. If you have previously been someone who writes exclusively in their home at their computer, consider whether you might be able to work in a coffee shop.
Once you learn to spot all the different writing environments that we all pass everyday, you will be able to make good use of your time, no matter where you find yourself.
Support Yourself with a Temp Job
You will have much more flexibility, and be under much less pressure, if you are able to earn a separate income on the side. It doesn’t matter what this extra work is, but it will clearly help to seek out part-time or temporary employment. This will leave you with more time free to pursue your goal of writing.
Obviously, a full-time job will mean you take home a larger pay packet, but it will leave you with significantly less time to pursue your goal of writing.
There are a number of agencies who can help you to find suitable work, Staff Heroes being one such company. This listing for temporary waitressing jobs – www.staffheroes.co.uk/employee/temp-jobs/waiter-waitress-jobs – is typical of the kind of temp work you can find through these agencies.
Make Use of Non-Writing Time
Believe it or not, writing is only a small part of what an author does. The bulk of the work occurs off the page, in the author’s own mind. If you can learn to use any downtime you have as time to plan your next piece, or to consider the direction you are currently taking with one, you will find that you can make use of your time even when you aren’t writing.
Finding the time to become an indie author isn’t easy, but it is possible for those with the determination to see it through.