A few days ago I had the pleasure of going out for an evening with some beloved family members and their spouses. My husband and I always enjoy those rare outings but we seldom find the time and opportunity to indulge ourselves. Between all our children's athletic endeavors, my writing and our mutual exhaustion on weekends, we are as likely to stay home on rare nights off than go out. So even though tired, we commited to dinner at a local Japanese restaurant where the chef cooks on the grill right at your table. The talented young man was quite the entertainer and the food was delicious, especially the rice. Best of all was the company. We caught up on family happenings, had a chance to see pictures of someone's newly constructed home, shared laughs and warm memories. It was completely relaxing. I had a writing goal for that night. I didn't write a single word but the next day I approached my writing refreshed from a day off.
I know many writers try to write every day even if only a little. I know others who only write during the week like a 9-5 job. Others insist on at least one day off. But all those writers break their own rules for a deadline or if the story is really flowing and they can't type fast enough to keep up with their creative flow. For many like me with full time jobs during the week and full time parenting to do, every minute is crucial. I seldom take a day completely off. But after the enjoyment of this wondeful dinner, I've decided I'm going to take some mini vacations of 24 to 48 hours every now and then. I'm going to tackle some of those household projects. I'm going to try some of those receipes I've saved from magazines and newspapers. I'm going to read something from my TBR pile and I'm not going to feel guilty. I'm going to fight that self imposed pressure to work every free minute. I'm going to stop and smell that chicken fried rice.