By Pamela Moeng
What role does guilt play in the search for writing time? At varsity, housekeeping always assumed gigantic importance just when an assignment was due or studying for an exam was urgent. Believing that the time spent on studies was 'me' time rather than an investment in family future meant I was easily self persuaded to clean cupboards and do laundry ahead of assignments.
Writing as a freelancer is the same, especially for a writer with a day job. Moolah generated isn't much yet, so it seems the time spent is a luxury pandering to dreams of Nobel-prize-winning greatness a la Nadine Gordimer rather than an investment in future earning potential, not to mention soul-satisfying mental health benefits.
Truth is that despite what women's liberation proponents would have had us believe, you simply can't have it all. At least not all at the same time. I've hurt people tremendously and jettisoned parts of my life I would rather have kept to become a writer, given that studying and the day job were absolute prerequisites and balancing all was too daunting a task to face.
How do you find balance and when guilt pangs strike, what are good ways to ward them off without just jettisoning people and responsibilities?