Writing While Parenting

Let me take the time to apologize to all parents out there that I underestimated. It is no easy task caring for an infant. I was once the person who criticized those for complained about having no time to do anything but virtually survive and feed the child, usually at the expense of sleep. In my infinite wisdom I simply assumed those were the people incapable of scheduling task and sacrificing the things that just don’t matter in life for their passions. I take it all back. After having a child of my own I’ve found that the struggle is real. However I’ve also found methods that work for me, to be the parent I want to be and pursue my passions.

 

Make no mistake, the days of random writing and inspirational nights pounding at a keyboard till sun up will never happen again. The first task I had to learn was take the little victories. A sleeping infant brings peace to the household. It’s likely there are chores, entertainment and general sleep that you can choose from during these times but setting your priorities is the challenge. Getting the drive to get the necessities done should always come first but when you have the ten to twenty minutes in between where you could turn on the television or pick on your work, that’s the defining moment. Don’t expect to write thousands of works in one sitting but five to fifty every few hours goes a long way within the month.

 

Second task is literally write whenever you can. I’m not speaking the downtime as I did before, we’re looking at the in between moments of your day. It’s likely you work as I do and have breaks, lunch and small talk sessions. Writing down fleeting thoughts or cleaver statements made by you or others; then pull a David Bowie and see what you can form when you’re deciding between sleep and a quick snack. Make your writing a part of everything you do.

 

Now of course the child is priority number one. There are so many thing to concern yourself with while the child is developing into their own. As an infant goes from cluster feeding to sensory development, attempting to form that first word and so many others what can be done to keep your motivations on your work while also having your child at the top of your list? Simply involve them. I read my creative catastrophes to my child daily. Whether is a drama, comedy, fantasy or a mixture of absolute nonsense she laughs and tries to pull together words as I foolishly disclose the window to my soul. Becoming more animated and acting your work can better help you craft a masterpiece with the help of your unconditional loving child.

 

I’ve given up most media formats other than music to continue to roast my words. It’s not as bold as it once was but I’ve got a new light blend. My words a less cynical and I seem to find myself coming up with ideas that my daughter can be proud of. Having a child has not only made me a better person but a better writer too. I just hope I can keep up with her generation as she grows into her own.

Igniting Your Words

Have you ever sat down and wanted to write a novel or poem that others would read and be blown away? For a writer the drive to write can vary. However, writing isn’t as simple as vomiting your thoughts on a page. Even when the intent is to do just that, it has to be strategic.

The worst feeling in the world to an artist is when someone views you work and says “I don’t get it.” Did you ever stop and ask your self why your main character has set out to save the world when they’re an under paid, bag boy at Walmart?

Continue reading “Igniting Your Words”

Writing Apps

Sometimes I miss good old fashion pen and paper but that’s not sexy. In a mobile age where everyone carries a laptop, tablet, or smart-phone it’s easy to write and staying organized can be made easy. If you’re anything like me using Microsoft Word, Pages, or LibreOffice just isn’t enough. Over the years I’ve found three powerful writing applications that have mobile support as well.

LyX

First on the list is probably the most versitle out of the group: LyX. LyX can be used on all PC platforms and is free to download. The application is a front-end to an older typeset system but I won’t dive into it’s history. No matter if your a novelist, tech-writer, or screen writer LyX has a ton of different features. Personal favorites being it’s ability to easily restructure your work, create table of contents for you, and supports languages around the world.

Bibisco

Growing as a writer can be tough and creating detailed stories with all the recommended exercises to give weight to a character are built into this application. From listing your characters, building their history, emotions, and motivations; to location descriptions and setting creation for your readers. I’ve spent many waking nights pounding at my desk trying to illustrate what my main character “looks” like. Finally, Bibisco has an analytical section that can show you how often you used a character or location. If you’re the “process” type writer building a road map with this application may work for you.

Celtx

Generally I stay away from cloud applications but Celtx offers some pretty attractive perks. If you’re collaborating with many writers, or perhaps consistently on the go but don’t want to drag your laptop around Celtx may be just for you. Beware that when you first join the site you’re in a 15 day free trail. So don’t get comfortable linking various writers to your work before knowing the price to continue working. However, all is not lose, Celtx free service will still allow you to access and write with little issue. Just don’t forget that you should download your work frequently from the “cloud” for offline access.

For all you starving artist out there each application is free to use. I chose these applications based on three categories: Ease of use, openness, and cross platform support. Each application offers exporting a project into at least a PDF format. None of them have a proprietary format that can’t be used with another application. So I give a objective win to Celtx by way of TKO over Bibisco for lack of Apple support.

What application do you use? Let me know in the comments.