In 2021, my husband and I welcomed our incredible Godsend of a son, JD, into the world. This was an incredibly rewarding and challenging time as I started to navigate life as a writer-mom. But the Lord moves in unbelievable ways, and through the process of navigating how to run my publishing business and be the best mom possible, I found a whole community with needs - mothers and non-mothers alike who had so many questions about writing and publishing. Questions I had answers to!
Thus began the tremendous blessing of being able to write coaching posts, like this one, which I've made available both on my social media and now here in perpetuity on my blog!
In this first post, I want to tackle one of the hardest questions I faced as a new mom with a writing business and a little one: how to stay on top of both! Here are a few tips I pulled together - I hope you'll find these helpful!
👶 Prioritize your baby. This seriously took so much stress off. It seems like a given, but if your baby is crying for you, if they're cluster feeding, if they need a contact nap, then remove the pressure to be creating right then. It's impossible to capitalize on productivity or to embrace parenthood if you're guilting yourself. Baby comes first. 🖊 Capitalize on naps/sleep cycles. This one is HUGE for me. I edited two of my books during my 3 month maternity leave by setting my laptop up on the couch and editing while Little Man napped in my arms. Now, some naps I also slept, or I watched TV, or read a book. But devoting at least one nap sesh a day to editing kept me in the game! 🤝 Partner up. This one took me longer to get comfortable with, but while baby is top priority, you need to make writing a self-care priority too! In August 2021, I told my husband I needed 15 minutes minimum of writing time every morning before he left for work. Some days this isn't feasible with his job, but most mornings he takes Bub while I get to write. Communicating with your partner or helper(s) that you need that time where you're not "on" and can just write is CRUCIAL. If you don't have that kind of help, this may be trickier, but let me encourage you: the older my son gets, the more often he will play on the floor beside me for long stretches. You may be in a season where baby needs your constant attention - that's okay! I promise they do become more independent and you will get time to write!
📅 Work in advance! For release prep, I take a few naptimes to batch graphics, posts, etc. You can also hire a service like SAPPHIRE INK PRESS to do a lot of cover reveal/release details, taking the burden off your plate!
✍ Stay flexible. Some days your baby will be needier than others. Some days you will be too tired or overtaxed for creativity. That's okay! Do what you can, when you can. Continue to make it a priority and snatch moments to work from your phone, tag someone in to help, etc. And always remember - baby comes first, you're not a bad parent OR writer, and you WILL write again!