journalWe begin the New Year bursting with new ideas and resolutions to get back to our writing, to get our memoir started, but after a while, we get bogged down in all our responsibilities to take care of the house, people, and bills that are a part of every life. Many writers I know tell me they are going to “begin my memoir soon,” or “get back to my writing.” Others tell me how busy they are and they just don’t have time, though that memoir keeps bugging them at the back of their mind.

I know how hard it is to find time, but it does not take a lot of time to get started writing. All you need is a small notebook you can carry with you all the time, your pen, and the commitment to sit down for 10 minutes a day.“That’s not enough time,” says a voice in your head.

But it is. In the groups I teach, we do a freewrite at the beginning of class–for 10, maybe 15 minutes. Each time a little gem emerges, an idea has begun to take root, and the writer is always surprised! Happily surprised, saying, “Wow, I didn’t know that story was waiting to be told.” Or, “That wasn’t so hard–I could do this and get some of my stories done.”

Yes, it’s true. Writing for a short time gives you permission not to get stuck in the endless, “I’ll get to it when I have time,” which just disappoints you. This new mantra is, “I’ll write a little each week, for 10 minutes. I can do that!”

Have fun. Get a notebook that you will enjoy using. Get out your pen, and tune into the stories in your heart.