This is another post in my “Writing and ____” series in which I explore a subject that writers frequently face. Today I’d like to talk about having multiple hobbies.
Writing is a hobby that takes a lot of time. It take time to hone your craft. It takes effort to carve out time to write and prepare to write. It takes time, effort and money to put your project out into the world, if that is your desire. It’s hard for me to imagine having multiple hobbies. I strive to, but I simply can’t handle juggling another thing. But, many people have multiple hobbies, or at least multiple things that capture their interest, and multiple responsibilities. When you’re a writer, how do you manage to have other hobbies?
For me, the draw of having several hobbies or leisurely pursuits is strong. But, the time in which to do all of the things that I would like to be doing is simply scarce. Right now I am working full-time, planning a wedding, serving on two nonprofit boards, and working on finalizing my novel for publication this spring/summer. And those are just the main priorities. There are several other things that I would like to focus on as well. I want to work on myself a bit and get into the shape I desire before my wedding. I want to become fluent in Spanish. I want to master calligraphy. And on top of these personal pursuits/interests, I want to maintain my relationship with my fiance, my family and my friends. there simply aren’t enough hours to do all of this. Maybe Hermione would loan me her Time-Turner!
So, because I cannot simply master all of the things (and of course working full-time is simply a must until I win the lottery…), I have learned that I need to prioritize. After my new book is published, I am going to step away from writing projects until after the wedding and our honeymoon. I will still maintain my blog, but I won’t have any work-in-progress insights to share with you for a while. Stepping back from my writing will allow me to finish planning the wedding and focus more on my health goals over the next several months. I’ve justified this in my head by convincing myself that stepping away from fiction for a few months will allow me to recharge for a bit and then come next winter, I’ll be ready to go! Following through will be tough, but it’ll be okay in the end.
That doesn’t really leave me time to pursue any of my other interests either like I’d hope taking a break from my writing would. If I weren’t planning a wedding and doing those other activities, perhaps I’d have the time to focus on some of my second-tier hobbies 🙂
Having multiple hobbies or even responsibilities (like being a parent and working and writing) or whatever your hurdles/challenges/priorities may be, can be an impediment to your progress with your projects. But, prioritizing your pursuits and being dedicated to carving out time to yourself is a must. Giving yourself the time you need or want isn’t selfish. It’s an important thing to do so that you can be your best self for your other obligations.
How do you handle warring interests and conflicting responsibilities all vying for your attention?