One of the best gifts you can give yourself as a writer is time.
Time is a scarce commodity for many of us. Anyone with obligations to meet beyond writing — school, work, family, a near-countless litany of other responsibilities — knows that every minute spent writing is a trade-off. Time spent writing is time not spent doing one of these other things.
As we enter the holiday season, time to write may be even harder to come by than it already is. Nothing eats up a day like a cross-country flight to Grandma’s house, and if you’ve ever managed to make meaningful progress on a novel on an airplane while in the company of young children, you are my new personal hero.
So as I considered a potential list of gifts that writers might want to give themselves for the holidays, everything on the list came down to a single item: time.
Except here’s the trick of it: sometimes, the gift you need is time spent writing; sometimes, the gift is time spent not writing.