Finding Time To Write With Diana Orgain

Today Diana Orgain the author of the Maternal Instincts Mystery series, chats about her heroine Kate Connolly. Kate is a stay-at-home mom who finds the time to also be an amateur sleuth. As anyone who has ever had a baby in their life knows, finding time to sleep, eat and shower is difficult, so we were extremely impressed by Kate's ability to multitask. Today the author reveals that she was inspired by her own struggles as a stay-at-home mom and mystery author. And then, don't miss your chance to win Orgain's new novel Formula for Murder!

First off – thanks so much to RT for inviting me to post here. In writing this post I’m trying to answer the number one question I get asked by moms (or other writers) – how I find the time to write. I have three little ones. My oldest is a girl, 7, and I have two boys ages 4 and 2. The honest answer is “I don’t know.”

Right now, two of three are playing with a tea set and the third, for unknown reasons, is working on taking his socks and shoes off and then putting them back on again. Today is the first day of summer and we’re getting ready to take the kids to the park. I’m writing this post between warming milk bottles, doing dishes and packing the diaper bag.  

All the hub-bub is typical around here. Both my husband and I work from home and we squeeze out every productive moment of the day we can. Pre-school for the boys starts in a 55 days (but who’s counting) and although I’ll miss my darlings during the day it means I may have some interrupted blocks of writing time (the operative word being “may”) as it always seems there’s something that needs to done.

So what is my advice for working or stay-at-home moms who want to write? You have to really really want it. It means early mornings (even earlier than those early morning feedings) and it means late nights (even later than those late night feedings) you get my drift. Caffeine is an absolute pre-requisite for me.

I think as writers (or anyone pursue a goal) you have to make the time. Yes, you can use found time wisely – but for bigger projects you have to make the time appear in your schedule. Commitment is a huge part of it and enrolling others to help you. For instance, I am very fortunate to have such a supportive husband and mother. My mom is always willing to take my kids to the park for a couple hours so I can write.

And then, once you have the time you cannot squander it. That is one thing I absolutely still struggle with.

Suddenly in an effort to find time to write, I arrange for my mom to have the kids and if my husband is out of the house on errands and I find myself alone…and the house is silent… 

I can write in peace or…or I could…gasp…I could actually nap! 

Yes, sleep is so good for the brain. I can think up a writing question, like say, what happens in Act II or “whodunit” and fall asleep and the answer will suddenly magically appear. So that is not really like not writing, because I will definitely still be working on the story…only…it’s just that I’ll be asleep.

Hmmm. So you see. It is a struggle. Always juggling and balancing priorities. 

Do you find yourself wanting to do something else when you know you should be focusing on a big project, dream or goal? What do you do? How do you bring yourself back to the task at hand? I’d love to hear your thought and tricks! 

- Diana Orgain

For more about the stay-at-home mom slash amateur sleuth Kate Connolly, you can pick up Diana Orgain's Formula for Murder in stores now or enter to win it below!

GIVEAWAY ALERT: Three lucky readers will each win a copy of Formula for Murder. To enter leave a comment telling us if how you get motivated to focus on a big project or email your answer here with the subject line "Diana Orgain's Formula for Murder Giveaway". Winners will be announced on June 23!