Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Guest Blogger, Kim Smith

Join me in welcoming author Kim Smith to Thoughts in Progress today on her on her Virtual Book Tour.

Kim is the author of the cozy mystery, “Buried Angel.” She will be giving away an electronic copy of her book today to one lucky person commenting on her post.

Here’s a brief description of her book: “Shannon Wallace is finding trouble in the most bizarre places these days, but not as bizarre as the ones her sidekick Dwayne Brown is finding. When his friend. Bubba, is found stuffed in a cooler in his flower shop, the hunt is on to find his killer. Could it be Bubba’s sister who is now his heir, or maybe one of the flower shop guys who works with Bubba? You can be sure the dreadful duo of Shannon and Dwayne won’t rest until they have South Lake’s police department, and the Hispanic hottie investigator, Sal Ramirez, find his man. Or was that woman?”

Kim with busy schedules and day-to-day activities, how do you find time to write?

Most of my writing friends ask at one time or another how I manage to turn out a whole novel and or several short stories and a novel over the course of a year. Time management I tell them. This is a crucial part of our job as a writer.

They usually tell me that finding time to write is what stops them from finishing a whole piece. There just isn’t enough time to do any writing. My short answer is: you haven’t looked hard enough at the clock.

No matter what you want to write, and there are a plethora of types of markets, you must sit down regularly and turn out work or you will fail. The formula, if you are one of those types is: butt in chair=finished product.

Note I didn’t say finished product on the same day. There is probably no way you will write an entire novel in one day, although I am sure someone has.

The main idea here is to cross off something on your list of daily chores. Either give it to another family member, or quit doing it. Now I bet I have your attention. If you say, but I have to feed my family, then I say yes, you do. But on one day can they have pizza a la delivery? The time you would have spent cooking you could spend writing.

If you do that once a week for 52 weeks and you write 1000 words each sitting, you will have two thirds of a book finished in a year. Now if you add to that number by just one day, say they eat hotdogs for dinner one night a week, then you could double the amount of writing you could do. You could justifiably have nearly two books written in a year.

Okay, I hear those of you out there saying but how on earth will I turn out a thousand words? That is a lot of stuff.

Well, let’s examine that. If you format your pages correctly, you know, two hundred fifty words per page, then one thousand words is how many pages? That’s it. Four. Can you write four pages a day? Still not convinced?

Okay here are a few other ways to cut out time waste and get into that chair.
       A.  Writing during your lunch hour or breaks when at work. Yes, it is perfectly okay to carry a notebook and pen in your briefcase, purse, or back pack. I mean what did writers do before computers?
       B.  Write when someone else is doing the driving. I do this every year when we take trips. It might only be a few hours to my family’s house or friend’s house, but I let my hubby drive and I write there and back.
       C.  Get up earlier. I get up at five thirty in the morning, work out for thirty minutes to an hour and write for fifteen minutes.  You know you want to. Didn’t that shower help loosen up the ideas when you took it this morning? Better to write two pages in the morning and two at night than none at all.

There you have it. It can be done. The only other thing I would suggest is to develop a nasty attitude. You really should become a stickler for your time. Make everyone understand that if you don’t get your time to write they will be very sorry. An unhappy writer is a terrible thing to behold.

Remember: talking about writing will never get a word on the page.

Kim, then time management can work. Thanks so much for stopping by today and sharing this information with us. It’s quite helpful.

A little background on Kim. She is the hostess for the popular radio show, Introducing WRITERS! Radio show on Blog Talk Radio. She is also the author of the zany, Shannon Wallace mystery series available now from Red Rose Publishing. You can visit Kim at her Website at

Remember to comment on Kim’s post today through 8 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 25, for a chance to win an electronic copy of her book.

Do you have a plan for scheduling your writing time? What could you give up once a week to make time to write?


  1. I like your advice on finding time to write. Thank so much for sharing this with us - though I don't think I'll be writing in the car anytime soon.

  2. Yep, I'm with Kim. I write whenever wherever I get the minute. And I am never without a notebook. But I also have scheduled writing times. For me I don't determine a specific time frame, but it has to be at least an hour a day...I have to work

    Mason, Another great interview.

  3. Butt in chair = finished product? LOL! I love it.
    You're right, Kim. It's not that difficult to do. My sixth book will come out soon and I often have people ask when I find the time.
    Just like anything else in life - if you want it bad enough, you WILL find the time!

  4. Great ideas for getting it done, Kim!

    Another thing? The more we practice writing (every day), the faster we go!

    Mystery Writing is Murder
    Mystery Lovers’ Kitchen

  5. Welcome ladies! Yes, it is all about getting it done. We should remember to encourage one another too. It's a lonely world, this writing life. Thanks for having me here Mason, and thanks to all who comment!

  6. Mason - Thank you so much for hosting Kim : ). Kim, thanks for your words of wisdom on how you make time to write : ). Like you, I get up early, and it's often at that time of day that I get a lot done - before there are a lot of distractions. Your book sounds terrific, and I would love to be the lucky winner.

  7. Hi, Kim, thanks for stopping by and sharing some great tips. Time management is indeed key, and, it's easy to say it takes discipline. You've gone a step further and given us some ways to develop that discipline.

    Best Wishes Galen.
    Imagineering Fiction Blog

  8. Thanks, Mason & Kim! I badly NEED a plan for writing! I am the least organized person when it comes to time. My greeting cards are organized. My underwear drawer is organized. But my time is CRAZY messed up divided! Thanks for the equation to keep in mind, Kim, and the new author introduction, Mason.

    I think I'll go write...What am I doing blogging?


  9. This is good advice and undoubtedly true, though I don't always follow it, because my schedule is erratic and I'm occasionally lousy at kicking my own backside. I find 1000 words is (now) a good amount to churn out relatively easily in one chunk, but it used to take me a month for a couple thousand. I'd get scared away and couldn't return : )

    I do like a big pan of lasagna as a future dinner-saver, and I terrifically admire all such disciplined writers. I'm wokring on it.

  10. I think our time is the hardest thing for us to organize better use of. Kim, thanks so much for sharing this information with us. There's a lot of good tips there that can apply not only to writing, but other things we need to accomplish in our daily lives.

  11. Thanks for your tips and suggestions, Kim! You're so right, we have to make the time to write.

  12. Great post, Kim! Perfect at the start of the year, reminding us to make better use of our time (and to quit procrastinating! Like I'm doing right now!!!)

    I've been known to write on any scrap of a paper. When a brilliant idea hits, and no way to record it, I have left it as a message on my answering machine! I wrote many chapters in the church parking lot while my kids were in Sunday School before church started. I write in the doctor's office, while waiting (forever) for those reports. I never watch live TV! Record everything. Oh, and my house is probably not as uncluttered as I'd like it to be. One day I will have a clean house! But not until the next book is done!

  13. Funny you should mention doctor's offices. I was just in one(hence my absence!) for a check up and honestly that place is a total time waster. They make us make appointments but they don't keep them. Sigh! Anyway, using free time that way sure is a great way to get some writing in. I believe the next victim in my book will be a doctor notorious for being late....

  14. Great advice, finding time to write wherever and whenever you can. I write in the movie theater, before the movie starts.

  15. Great advice. Finding the time is always my biggest challenge :)

  16. Thanks for having me on the blog. I hope we all find more time to write and create this year. Happy 2010 everyone!

  17. Hi Kim -

    Just wanted to pop in and thank you for the exceptional advice about getting 'our butts in the chair.' I'm one who sorely needs that advice, and I'm working this week on making it happen.

    I even just learned about speed-blogging.

    Anyhow, congrats and good luck with the new book. :)

    ~ Corra

    from the desk of a writer


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.