1. When you wake up to a quiet house in the morning, grab your cup of coffee and sit down at the computer to write a few chapters, do not, I repeat DO NOT check e-mail or get on facebook. The next thing you know your coffee cup is empty, the kids are awake and the sounds from Curious George are destroying any ability to put together two sentences.
2. Keep fresh batteries in your voice recorder. That way when you have a clever idea on that half hour commute to work, you don't have to look for the old Sheetz receipt and a dull pencil under your seat to write things down. It also really helps if you actually know HOW to use the voice recorder your husband bought you for Christmas.
3. Bring your laptop when you are trapped at softball games and three-hour play practices. Even though you may find yourself distracted and unable to actually use the laptop, just knowing it is there in your minivan waiting for you makes you feel confident if an idea actually hits you. Of course, the paranoid thought of having someone steal the laptop out of your minivan comes close to canceling out the confident feelings you experience.
4. Set realistic goals. Goals like "I will write one chapter per week, but only when the laundry is finished and I clean the guinea pig cage". Then, with that goal in mind, be prepared to complete the second chapter by the time your youngest child leaves for college.
5. Take it slow, rest in knowing that God has called you to the task, and pay attention to strangers in line at Friendly's who complain that their child's free ice cream cone melted all over her feet and Friendly's better get her cleaned up along with a fresh ice cream cone. Stupid Friendly's and their free ice cream cones that melt in 85-degree weather. Geesh. Yup, there are people all around you that will make it into your book and they don't even know it!
There you go....now, you should be ready to let those creative juices flow and crank out an award-winning piece of literature! No need to thank me....the pleasure is all mine!