Writing Exercises: "Dual lives, Making Your Job Serve Your Writing"


Let's be honest: we writers are the greatest procrastinators. Some of us however had been able to get a handle on our procrastination, and in large part we have been able to do that with a little help from our part and full-time jobs. That wonderful schedule that comes with our job, and the time management jobs teach us to develop has enabled us to acquire a skill many writers out there wish they had: organized time management.

We writers are also notorious for starting projects and never finishing them. Yet another great thing our jobs teach us is that unfinished projects are unpaid work. Brainwashing ourselves with this mentality can be key to completing those projects we've stuffed in the backs of our idea vaults by starting, sustaining, tracking and complete each project we give ourselves. Cross-pollinating between a daily career and a writing career is the key to balancing dual lives, one that will need plenty of practice and dedication!

Greaney urges us to remember that a daily career and a writing career do not have to be loggerheads. The following ten advantageous reasons spell out specifically why writers benefit from their dual lives:

1) The most obvious is food and a roof over your head. A roof over your head and a food source sounds a million times better than working outside of a homeless shelter and scavenging for food while writing.

2) Professional development is the next point on the list. Job teach us how to conform to a successful way of accomplishing tasks in a timely matter. This behavior is exceedingly crucial to mastering when balancing your dual lives.

3) A steady income provides us less stress when it comes to paying bills and subscribing to magazines, buying books on writing and buying novels to review (or even funding those online blogs we pretend not to obsess over).

4) We also gain professionalism and panache from our daily careers. Having to dress up for that stressful first job interview, and then maintain that air of professionalism pays off in the publishing industry as well. Publishers prefer a clean, professionally printed manuscript to look over. Business-standard presentation is a favorable one.

5) Time management, as mentioned above, is an exceedingly important skill to master when writing. Both careers depend heavily on the time you invest in your own efficiency.

6) Tenacity, tenacity, tenacity. The tenacity you develop towards problem solving are as invaluable as the time management skills you develop.

7) Most jobs will expose you in one way or another to the wonderful world of marketing. Guess what? You need marketing skills under your belt when it comes to publishing and promoting your book. Don't forget to take some notes!

8) Critical mass: the constant scheduling and logistics that come with your daily career force you to have to work a schedule around what free time you have between assignments and time you set apart for your writing.

9) Expertise and credibility are another advantage when it comes to what you gain from your daily careers. You become good at whatever you do in your job with enough experience. You can draw inspiration from your daily career that will influence your writing career.

10) Being staunch in your beliefs: because you're not dependent on your writing for a form of income, you can write what you want to write when you have the time. As a result of this, you'll be less susceptible to the fads and fashions of the publishing industry.

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