“She spent much of her early adult life accumulating degrees in English, Librarianship and Children’s Literature while procrastinating about writing…”
When I read this in an author biography of Kit Pearson, I wanted nothing more than to ask her what she did next. How did she overcome procrastination, commit to writing, and get to where she is today (one of Canada’s most respected children’s writers)?
Sometimes, hitting “send” on an email in the wee hours of the morning when you’re at an uncertain moment in your career is something you live to regret. But this time, it paid off! I sent a fan letter out into the darkness of the interwebs, and lo and behold… this gem of an author (and fellow Edmontonian!) was kind enough to write back to me with some wise words.
In your experience, how can an aspiring writer best be creatively productive while working a day job? Do you have any words of advice about choosing a career path that leaves you with the time and mental energy to write? In other words, how do you think a person avoids the pitfall of being the editor/librarian/teacher/what-have-you with a never-ending first novel in her desk drawer?
I certainly sympathize with your procastination! It’s always hard at the beginning. I don’t think it really matters what career you have besides writing – the trouble is, you have to have something to support you while you get started. So I would look for something you like to do. It really helps if you can work part-time and if you don’t have much work to take home. Then you have to be very strict with yourself about a schedule of writing that fits in with your work schedule. It could only be half an hour a day – as long as you do it regularly, you will eventually get something written! It’s hard to be disciplined at first, but soon it will become a habit.
~ April, 2009