We all know that writing can be both a solitary pursuit and one that takes an incredible amount of time. Honing one’s craft over hundreds and thousands of hours while sitting quietly in front of a notepad or computer screen is often time not spent out in the world, engaging with friends and loved ones.
It’s time where we’re happily lost in our own head, creating our own worlds during the time we’re not out living in the real one. Writing can be a dazzling, fulfilling, and meaningful time, but life can beckon and intrude into that space, and not always unfairly. Sometimes it’s life that must come first.
As Jennifer Hubbard wrote in her truly magical post about the topic:
Sometimes the writing desk is a solace, an escape from tedium or pain in daily life.
Sometimes writing is a celebration. Sometimes it’s a way to process painful truths.
Writing is a life examined, which is supposed to be a life worth living. But a life can’t be spent only writing.
Sometimes we put down writing for a while. Sometimes it refuses to be put down.
So how do you strike the right balance between writing and living? How do you know when it’s time for writing and time for life? How much living is necessary to be a good writer, and how much writing is necessary for you to live?