The advice I hear from authors most often is that you should write every day. Whether you’re writing 500 words before work, or 5,000 words every evening, you should be getting yourself into a rhythm of writing. While writing is a passion, if you want to sell your work, it is also a job, and should be treated as one.
Well, this week, I took annual leave from this job of writing. I booked a last minute holiday, and I stopped writing.
Everyone knows that sometimes, no matter how much you love your job, it can get you down. Whether it’s monotony, stress, or simply just needing some relaxation, we need a break from our jobs now and again.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t take a break from my day job, as we’re currently in student move in week, so things have been all hands on deck. However, taking this time off from writing has been incredibly beneficial for me. I’d been stressed and guilt ridden about how little I was getting done through stress and tiredness. Each time I didn’t hit a word target, I’d feel like I was letting myself down. Taking that off my shoulders for a week was liberating.
I took a holiday from guilt as well as from writing, and you know what, it freed up my head. I’ve planned more this week than I’d done in the last month because the ideas came to me. I’ve jotted things down and then promptly forgotten about them. Instead of spending the week staring at a computer screen feeling guilty when only a few words appeared, I have been cross stitching without feeling like I’m procrastinating. I’ve gone to bed early, I’ve watched a few movies, and I’ve forgotten that writing exists past when ideas pop up.
If you plan on being a writer then yes, you should be making writing something you do every day. However, you also need to remember that almost everyone needs a holiday now and again. There are some writers who claim they never take a holiday, and perhaps they don’t need to, but don’t feel guilty about deciding you do need one.
Even if it’s only a few days, taking a holiday can be incredibly refreshing so that when you go back to work, you’re chomping at the bit to get back to it.
I know I am.