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LStein
04-13-2016, 01:33 AM
If you had to choose, would you choose to get a book published or have a baby?

Wait! Before you jump down my throat, this is meant as a purely hypothetical question. I know millions(?) of writers are parents, too. It's just that I sort of think of my W.I.P. as my baby, excited to see it grow and change and, hopefully, take its first steps into the world without me. I'm pretty close to having kids and I realized that if I HAD to choose between my book baby and an actual baby, it would be really difficult! I've wanted to be an author far longer than I've wanted to be a mother. Anyway, I thought it was a fun mental exercise. So, what would you choose? Book or baby?

(Those of you who have children already, I'm actually curious to hear how you balance the responsibilities.)

andiwrite
04-13-2016, 01:47 AM
I don't want kids. Book all the way. :)

Maze Runner
04-13-2016, 01:50 AM
Hard to juggle writing, marriage, child-rearing, making a living, and still manage to get a few laughs in. But, sincerely, my kids have brought me far more joy and much less heartache. Easy pick for me.

aus10phile
04-13-2016, 01:52 AM
Baby. No question. It would be hard to give up writing, but I would channel my creative drive into other outlets. I'm very glad I don't have to choose though!

ETA: About balancing writing w/ kids... you just have to be very picky about how you spend your time. It forces you to choose your priorities carefully.

WriterDude
04-13-2016, 01:54 AM
You can write a book at any time of life. It's hard with kids but not impossible and varies by child and by parent.

Finding the balance of responsibility between writing and baby is easy. Writing comes last, but it does come.

Brightdreamer
04-13-2016, 02:01 AM
I don't want kids. Book all the way. :)

+1

Helix
04-13-2016, 02:30 AM
Book.

Fruitbat
04-13-2016, 03:12 AM
Baby. I lurve babies.

My kids are grown.

CindyGirl
04-13-2016, 03:16 AM
Baby. Couldn't imagine life without my daughter.

Moonchild
04-13-2016, 03:23 AM
I don't want kids. Book all the way. :)


+1

+2

LStein
04-13-2016, 03:34 AM
It seems like those with kids are reluctant to give up the joy their children have brought them. Fair point! I think it's hard for those of us without kids to really understand what it's like. But never getting a book published? That's a hard pill to swallow.

Of course, I plan on doing both. Thanks aus10phile, I will try to learn how to prioritize before the kids come (a skill I've yet to master.)

Latina Bunny
04-13-2016, 04:12 AM
I don't have kids (yet), but I want 'em in the future. :) I love working with and taking care of children in my various jobs throughout my life (part-time daycare; babysitting; assistant teaching; childcare providing), so I would definitely choose children.

Baby for me. :)

Mclesh
04-13-2016, 04:59 AM
I didn't really start writing until my son was way past the toddler stage. I think he was eight or nine, so it wasn't the mad juggling. I couldn't have devoted the time I did to writing my first book when he was a baby.

Comparing the two, though? No comparison. Kid all the way. BUT don't have a baby unless you really want one. And if you think you'd rather have a book published than have a kid--write the book. ;)

Ol' Fashioned Girl
04-13-2016, 05:05 AM
Book. No question about it.

Dmbeucler
04-13-2016, 05:33 AM
I've had to make this choice, and had it made for me. The book I "finished" (it needs more revision but I got through to the end) was written during the year after I lost a pregnancy. I had one child, and was writing in late nights and weekend times. I think if I hadn't had the pregnancy loss I wouldn't have written that particular book. We had some infertility issues after that loss and I wrote a good portion of the book during that time. When I got pregnant again (he'll be a year next month) I lost writing time to morning sickness, then I've lost a lot of writing time again for his infancy. It's hard to write coherently when you sleep in 2-4 hour bursts, or edit when your computer is in the middle of the living space and you get twenty minute or less bits of time there. So between this and other issues we're done having kids.

I've pretty keenly felt the "can't actually have everything" this year, since my youngest has been so dependent. My free time a week is measured in a couple of hours total, but if I had never had kids, I don't know if I would have the same drive to get published.

As for the balancing (and keep in mind this comes from a stay at home mom, so my experiences are not universal). First I have an awesome partner. My husband gets it, and my lack of free time this last year hasn't been because he isn't pitching in. Second I make choices, I've seen the little triangle diagrams where it says: sanity, clean house, writing. Pick one (or two). With parenting it's more like: self care, clean house, homemade dinners, kids activities, writing, sleep. Pick two, maybe three, and some days you'll only get one. Some days I don't write (and lets face it, that's most days recently) and that's ok. Some days I end up living on chocolate covered fruit and crackers and wear PJ's all day, or the kids eat fast food, or the floor is carpeted with toys. Not beating myself up about what I can't do (and that is a work in progress) is a big thing. Strategically giving up other activities was another thing that helped me balance. I used to knit, sew, bake crazy things, do a dance class, LARP, read a lot, play MMORGs, do a weekly gaming group... and I had to make choices and cut some of those out completely (MMORG's, knitting, dancing, weekly gaming), and make the others very occasional.

Once I had carved out as much time as I could, I joined a "meet in person" writing group, picked up an alphasmart (it keeps me focused on putting words down since there is no internet), and started finding places outside of my house to write. McDonalds ended up being one of the better places since they were open until 11 pm at night. About a third of my first book was probably written there. The oldest goes to kindergarten this August, and I have two more years till the youngest is old enough for part time preschool. He's slowly starting to sleep longer (two nights of 6 hours of sleep for me this week, woot!) and be less dependent on me so I'm hoping that I can get back to some sort of schedule by this summer.

Roxxsmom
04-13-2016, 05:55 AM
Book. No question about it. But that's hardly a fair question for me because I chose not to have kids anyway, not because I had to choose between kids and anything specific. I never had a burning desire to be a mom. Or maybe the choice for me was, "Kids or getting enough sleep sometimes," or "Kids or having lots of animals," or "Kids or living a life where I never know the agony of stepping on a lego in the dark" (though kicking a wire dog crate at 3 in the morning on the way to the bathroom is its own special kind of pain).

Sword&Shield
04-13-2016, 10:21 PM
5 years ago, I would have said book. I didn't want kids. I had no desire to become a parent. I was a 20-something yuppie living on the river in a condo downtown making great money in the tech field.

Then boy meets girl. I found a girl who I could stand longer than a week, that became a month, that became a year. Then I became a parent. Now I have a daughter and I would sacrifice everything for her. It is an intense internal shift

Now I am a 30 year old Dad-bod in the suburbs who's free time consists of beer-league softball, ballet, and backyard chickens.

Finding time to write is much harder now. What was the beginning of the night is now the middle of the night. 10pm is my bedtime... on the weekends. You just have to be very judicious with your time and learn to say "No" to other people. Your time is a precious commodity and you should spend it efficiently. Don't just give it away.

KTC
04-13-2016, 10:30 PM
At this point, my babies have babies. That is something I would never give away. I adore having books with my name on them on my bookshelf, but NOTHING compares to being a parent FOR ME. I love my babies...and I love my grandbabies.

If I could only have one, bye bye books.

But I'm a selfish bastard. I already have both. BAM!

**drops mic**

Sword&Shield
04-13-2016, 10:32 PM
"Kids or living a life where I never know the agony of stepping on a lego in the dark"

They're picking the shrapnel out of my heel to this day.

Maggie Maxwell
04-13-2016, 10:40 PM
*takes all her mother-in-law's hopes and dreams and not-the-least-bit-subtle hints for a grandchild and tosses them out the nearest window* Book please.

KTC
04-13-2016, 10:41 PM
"Kids or living a life where I never know the agony of stepping on a lego in the dark" (though kicking a wire dog crate at 3 in the morning on the way to the bathroom is its own special kind of pain).

Ooh! Yes. 3 in the morning seems to be a theme too. That was the time that I needed to head out on a 3-hour (both directions) journey to pick up my daughter from a place up north where she inadvertently found herself stranded back in her University days. I'd do anything for her...including lay down my life for her...but she magically picks the most inopportune times to have a crisis. (-; With her, there was no Lego...but there were plenty of those rigid plastic Polly Pocket doll bitches. I think I still have one in my heel. My son, though...he had a special way of rigging the house with Legos.

Snowstorm
04-13-2016, 10:56 PM
Me: book!

ZachJPayne
04-13-2016, 11:51 PM
I don't want kids, I don't want family, I don't want a 9-to-5 job where I have to settle down.

So publish me a book, and get me out on the road, talking to high school students, visiting cons and retreats.

<3

Silva
04-14-2016, 12:59 AM
I'd pick a book over another baby (I have two children already), hands down. I love babies, but I prefer other people to have them from now on, and I love my kids, but I don't find parenthood personally fulfilling.

However, I don't believe I would be able to write the things I'm writing if I hadn't gone through the circumstances that led to me having babies (and surviving their babyhood, haha). My whole worldview and self-perception changed, and not because of the typical reasons people mention about having children. It's all very complicated.

jjdebenedictis
04-14-2016, 01:00 AM
There is no comparison. If you want a child--i.e. to create a human being and invest twenty years into realizing the joy of seeing that person thrive--then you do that. No freakin' creative project is even comparable.

But that said, having a child is too sacred a duty to embark on unless you are that committed, because that's a fellow human being whose existence you might blight if you're careless. There are many, many people wise enough about what they want from their own life to never voluntarily choose parenthood. And to them, it's an easy decision to choose getting a book published because they honestly don't want the alternative.

So it's a bit of a weird question. Want a child? Then you'd choose that if you couldn't have both. Want no child, however? Then getting a book published is icing on the cake of a life you already got.

JenniferLee
04-17-2016, 02:07 AM
Book.

I think my brain came without the "desire to have a family" chip installed. I adore children and have a strong mothering instinct (if you let me hold a baby animal, it's just a matter of time until it's in a bonnet and matching pajamas, being rocked to sleep in my arms while I sing lullabies), but the idea of actually having children myself is just... not something I want or even think about.

Kerosene
04-17-2016, 02:26 AM
I'm in the mindset of no children as of the current period of my life. So, book.

Not that I wouldn't mind having a child, but as a child of parents who weren't prepared to have children themselves, I have the pressure within me saying that if I were to raise a child in this world that their life would be my top priority. A stable career, time to spend with them, time to deal with their education. While I and others could do both, my child's life would create a shift in priorities and I feel like after succeeding in my priorities I would have little to no time left for my writing and other passions. Also, I'm in the mind of exploring the world and my options in life until I meet a successful point in my life.

angeldove
04-17-2016, 04:22 AM
I never wanted to be a mother so it's book all the way for me

lizmonster
04-17-2016, 05:02 AM
I'd never give up my daughter. But I will say that before she was born, I wouldn't have been able to finish a book, much less sell one. Dealing with a baby taught me a lot about priorities and navel-gazing and what was and wasn't important to me with only a limited number of hours in a day. It's weird, but I'm so much more organized now - because with a child, you have to be. There's no other choice.

L. OBrien
04-17-2016, 06:59 AM
Book. I'm about to move out west and start grad school. A child would seriously derail all of my plans right now. Moreover, given the "all first drafts suck, I'll fix it later" attitude that I take towards my creative projects, I suspect that I'd be doing the child a favor by choosing the book.

regdog
04-17-2016, 08:05 PM
Book

Barbara R.
04-17-2016, 08:30 PM
Once you give birth to a book, it never changes. You may come to understand it better, but it's now set in stone, or as good as. It will never surprise you to the core...the way children can. A book will never love you back or give you grand-books of any sex. A book will never take what you've given it and carry it further than you ever could.

Don't get me wrong. I'm as proud as can be of my books. But relationships (mutual relationships) are the stuff of life.

That said, writers absolutely need to protect their writing time. As a writer who raised 2 kids while working from home, I share some advice with other writers in this post (http://barbararogan.com/blog/?p=853)about how to write while parenting or vice versa. For starters: I taught my kids to recite two things as soon as they were old enough to speak: their address, and the following mantra.

Me: "When can you disturb Mom at work?"

Boys in unison: "In case of fire, flood, or injuries with spurting blood."

Latina Bunny
04-17-2016, 08:44 PM
That said, writers absolutely need to protect their writing time. As a writer who raised 2 kids while working from home, I share some advice with other writers in this post (http://barbararogan.com/blog/?p=853)about how to write while parenting or vice versa. For starters: I taught my kids to recite two things as soon as they were old enough to speak: their address, and the following mantra.

Me: "When can you disturb Mom at work?"

Boys in unison: "In case of fire, flood, or injuries with spurting blood."

Lol! I love this (and the rest of your blog post).

I hope I can balance my creative endevours with raising children (when I get them in the far future, I hope! *crosses fingers*) as well. :)

I feel like the minority here, wanting kids over being published. XD I really want kids in the far future. I'm even willing to stay closeted in order to adopt them* or have them. That's how badly I want them...

*My state recently repealed the ban of same-sex couples adopting. However, there are still some areas where LGBT orientation or gender identity are not protected by anti-discrimination laws in the workplace, etc.

Maze Runner
04-17-2016, 08:46 PM
Just wanna say that for those of you who grew up in an unstable home, had immature, self-centered parents, and therefore think you'd make a bad parent yourself, sometimes, the exact opposite is true, because you learned what 'not' to do. My mother was married three times by the time I was eight. I was pulled from school to school, a lot of upheaval and a lot of turmoil any time we happened to light somewhere for a year or two. I didn't realize until after I was a parent that it would help me be a good parent. I think what happens is you look down at this kid, who's dependent on you for everything. Not just for food and shelter, but for love and example and happiness. They're looking to you to show them how to live. So most of us will take on that responsibility, once we see it, we gratitude.

Barbara R.
04-17-2016, 10:32 PM
Bunny-Gypsy--Luckily, it's not either/or.

Latina Bunny
04-17-2016, 11:23 PM
Bunny-Gypsy--Luckily, it's not either/or.

And thank God* for that. :)

I can understand there are sacrifices to be made, but I don't think all of a person's life ambitions or dreams completely stop/shatter, if one chooses to marry and/or have kids.

The way some people casually describe having kids or even being married, you would think it's like being in an inevitable prison (or constantly miserable Hell), or something, lol.

I think I can still have bits of life beyond just being a mother/caretaker. I don't think I have to sacrifice every hobby or goal just because I settle down and have kids.

It's called organizing one's life and priorities, and multitasking. I strongly feel that a woman can be a still be a full person with needs, wants, and hobbies outside of motherhood.

(*or whomever or whatever, for non-Christian or non-religious folks)

ETA: To be clear, I was not talking about people who don't want kids. I respect and support people to be able to choose on whether they want children or not. :) I'm annoyed at people acting like having kids is an inevitable punishment or something, lol. And that women who have kids suddenly have to lose everything and just become housewives/mothers and that's it.

kuwisdelu
04-17-2016, 11:37 PM
I choose both!

Latina Bunny
04-17-2016, 11:45 PM
I choose both!

*whines* Kuwiiiii, you're not following the rules, you rebel/cheater! XD Choose one, is what the OP asked. :P

(BTW, I would like both, too. ^_^ However, in this weird hypothetical situation, if I had to choose one, the baby is first priority for me.)

neandermagnon
04-18-2016, 12:17 AM
Well as I have children already I'm answering the question about how I balance the responsibilities. I'm a lone parent, aka breadwinner and carer of the children, i.e. the responsibility normally handled by two people. I still find time to write.

I get up at 6am and try to do a bit of writing before I have to get the kids out of bed and ready for school.
I try to do a little bit more writing after the kids are in bed, if I'm not too tired (usually I am but can still manage a bit of rereading and editing here and there).
Then there's the weekends. A significant chunk of the weekend is involved in tidying the house (most of the effort in that is getting the kids to help with it as I don't want them to grow up to be entitled brats). But I still manage to find some time to write. I also find time to play the piano* and rugby, though rugby's only possible because my mum's happy to babysit once a week.
*electric piano with headphones because I live in a flat
I watch almost no TV.
My day job is one where I can just log off my phone and desk at 5pm and not have to think about work again until 8:50 the next morning. The pay isn't wonderful but it means that work doesn't dominate my entire life so I can be there for my kids and even get a little time in the evenings to do writing. It means I'm not rich but some things are more important than money.

The biggest drawback is that I rarely if ever get significant chunks of unbroken time to write. I prefer to write that way but I've learned to adapt.

LilyJade
04-18-2016, 01:34 AM
Book. There is no question for me. It's been 19 years since I first decided I didn't want children, I doubt it's going to change any day soon. Don't get me wrong, I like/love kids just fine. I work with them and I would take a bullet for my nephews... but I like coming home to my cats and the quiet. I see no reason at all to add children to the mix.

shivadyne
04-18-2016, 12:27 PM
this is an easy choice for me! :) i'll take that published book over an infant tyvm. i don't have the energy to deal with having children. kids are alright to interact with, but i wouldn't want one of my own.

aus10phile
04-18-2016, 08:22 PM
I'd never give up my daughter. But I will say that before she was born, I wouldn't have been able to finish a book, much less sell one. Dealing with a baby taught me a lot about priorities and navel-gazing and what was and wasn't important to me with only a limited number of hours in a day. It's weird, but I'm so much more organized now - because with a child, you have to be. There's no other choice.

This is so true for me too! I mean, I haven't sold a book yet, but I'm more productive now, after kids. You have to be very intentional about how you use your time.

RedDragoness
04-18-2016, 08:41 PM
I've seen the little triangle diagrams where it says: sanity, clean house, writing. Pick one (or two). With parenting it's more like: self care, clean house, homemade dinners, kids activities, writing, sleep. Pick two, maybe three, and some days you'll only get one.

My grandmother raised six kids almost single-handedly - my grandfather was a traveling salesman, back when that was still a thing, and was on the road 5 days a week, and cooped up in his room drunk and/or sleeping the other two days - and she used to say that a happy family is more important than a clean house. So, kudos to you for knowing your limits!

~~

I really admire people who know they don't want to have kids. I see some of my child-free friends, who are all now in their 40s, still getting pressure from people to have babies. Like strangers know them so well, right? And honestly, with two little ones of my own (7 1/2 and 4 years old), I do get envious of all the fun trips they get to take.

For me, I never thought of it as babies or books. I can't remember a time when I didn't want to be a writer, and I can't remember not wanting to be a mother. Neither of these things ever just "happened" to me. There were times in my life when I was unemployed and all alone and single and had so much free time, I had nothing else to do *but* write. And there were times after each of my babies was born that I couldn't remember my own name, much less come up with coherent sentences and form a story.

I'm lucky to get to have both now. As soon as my kids started napping on a schedule, I used that time to write since I couldn't go out of the house anyway. I'm lucky that my husband makes enough for me to be a stay-at-home-mom, though I did work part-time from home for a while to help make ends meet. I'm lucky that my kids are both in school every day now, even if it's only 4 hours for the little one. I'm lucky that my kids are at the point where they can finally entertain themselves when they *are* home and play together nicely so that I can do tertiary writing stuff (looking up agents or markets, or research, or outlining, or networking) when they are around.

And, honestly? I went through a HUGE bought of major writers' block back when I was working at pink collar day jobs while my husband was in grad school, and I just couldn't write a word. I found myself using up all my creative energy at the office to support some very child-like adults. But as soon as I had my first kid, and he started napping, I suddenly had the urge to write, write, write. And I did. And what I wrote was crap, but it lead me to where I am now: two novels done, over a dozen short stories out for submission, and writing almost regularly.

I think that at times it might be either/or. But not forever, not if you really want both.

-RD

phoenixwings89
04-29-2016, 04:02 AM
Book.

Definitely.

Don't get me wrong I adore children, but having one of my own.

???

The idea unsettles me.

Perhaps it's because of my fear of the whole process that was I stilled in me from a young age. Or maybe it's because of other factors.

I don't know.

I always think of the books I write as my babies. They are born from me and that is enough for me.

One day I might adopt. I've always loved the idea of that over having my own children.

For now I'm happy as I am.

So book it is :)

MaggieMc
04-29-2016, 06:11 AM
Here's a practical balance the responsibilities answer ...fairly typical day:

- 4 year old joins me in bed at 4.30 am, cuddly and lovely, back to sleep.
- he's awake and ready to go at 6am. I stumble out of bed, pull on work out gear, wake husband and 6 year old
- 6.15 am walk/run with the dog while husband does kid breakfast, packs kid lunches, gets ready for work etc
- 7.15 am husband leaves for work, I dress kids, pack bag for work, school bags etc, do bit of homework
- 8.15 cycle to school with kids
- 8.45 am leave kids at school cycle to work
- work work work + sandwich at my desk
- 2.50 pm pick up kids on way home from work, go to playground with kids and dog
- 4.30 pm make dinner clean kitchen, laundry time plus homework, clean up after dinner plus plus plus housework/kid stuff
- 7.30 pm kids in bed WRITE WRITE WRITE for two glorious (if tired) hours : )
- 9.30 pm get work stuff & my lunch organised for next day
- 10.00 pm bed, 10.30 - 11.00 pm sleep.

Above day supported by obsessive routine which means all school uniforms, work out gear and work clothes for week ahead are clean, dry and ironed by Sunday evening. Food planning bane of my existence but try to keep food shopping down to 3 days a week ..still too often. Some days I work (day job) 'til 6pm so on those days husband does most childcare. At lease one weekend day I get some day writing time as well, but lots of house/kid stuff to do at weekends also.

Life is busy busy busy ...other than wishing I could add 4 hours to every day ....wouldn't have it any other way.

If you don't really want to have kids ...don't do it. To be a good parent requires 100% commitment - if you're not willing to make major sacrifices don't do it. That's not to say that parents shouldn't have a life ...just that there are times when your needs/wants will have to take a back seat ...sometimes for a long time.

CinnamonAntonym
04-29-2016, 07:01 AM
Hm! Interesting question. Either definitely provides its own set of challenges.

I don't want biological children or marriage, and I just can't get into the mindset most people seem to have when it comes to starting a family/having bio kids of their own ASAP. I might be an adult, but I can hardly afford to take care of myself. Why would I want to bring a child into that? In some ways, it's a little selfish. I like finally having my own space and my own time as an adult. I don't want it to be sucked up by another life form I'm forced to care for, even if I do love them. I've always been that way, even in romantic relationships.

Maybe when I'm older and more financially stable I'll adopt or foster some older children, but no thanks to babies or traditional marriage/relationships.

tl;dr: Definitely the book.

MaggieMc
04-29-2016, 04:45 PM
Good for you CA and all the others on this thread who recognise that kids are not what they want. I think a lot of people feel such enormous pressure from society to do the whole marriage + kids thing that they make jump right in, and wake up in their thirties trying to figure out who they really are.
For me getting married and having kids turned out to be the best decisions I ever made....but that's me and I think I got very very lucky in my husband.

Pennguin
04-29-2016, 04:49 PM
I have absolutely no parental desires or instincts. I also have multiple health problems that could potentially be passed to a child, so I choose abstinence, and, for the purposes of this question, the book.

mccardey
04-29-2016, 05:04 PM
if I HAD to choose between my book baby and an actual baby, it would be really difficult!

That's a very - problematic - outlook. A book is just a book. But you'll find that out.

CinnamonAntonym
05-01-2016, 05:31 AM
Good for you CA and all the others on this thread who recognise that kids are not what they want. I think a lot of people feel such enormous pressure from society to do the whole marriage + kids thing that they make jump right in, and wake up in their thirties trying to figure out who they really are.
For me getting married and having kids turned out to be the best decisions I ever made....but that's me and I think I got very very lucky in my husband.

Ahh yeah! I may change my mind some day, but I'm content for now. I've never been very good with kids anyway, haha.

It sounds like you had a really good experience becoming a parent :)

buz
05-01-2016, 05:36 AM
I shall write my book upon a baby
And that child shall become the Book of the White-Rumped Vulture Queen

Chrissy
05-01-2016, 05:57 AM
Giving birth to a baby is easier than giving birth to a book.

I'm just saying.

Helix
05-01-2016, 06:02 AM
Giving birth to a baby is easier than giving birth to a book.

I'm just saying.

What if it's an e-book?

:idea:

What if it's an e-baby?

LStein
05-01-2016, 09:35 PM
Thanks for all the responses and advice!

I meant the original post in a more lighthearted way than I think it was taken at times.

I definitely want children. I want them in my near future. But I do worry that writing will take a back seat when they come. Maybe I'll be okay with that because I'll be in love with my children but, in my pre-children mental state, I don't want that to happen.

I'm really cheered by all the parents who wrote and showed that it IS possible to still write when you have babies and also by the parents who validated what I've heard elsewhere, that, A, it becomes much harder to find the time, and B, it may become less important. Also, yay to everyone choosing not to have children! Yay, free choice!

But, parents, I'm taking to heart what you said about prioritizing writing over other things (not over my future offspring!) I'm trying to do that now and I hope to be a MASTER AT PRIORITIZING by the time the first baby comes.

Barbara R.
05-02-2016, 03:22 PM
You'll do fine. Just practice saying no.

"No, sorry, can't run the bake sale."

"Play date? Sorry, working."

"Dinner? You've got hands, haven't you?"

WriterDude
05-02-2016, 10:26 PM
Having kids can contribute to your writing effort too. I'm never short of inspiration for fantastical sounding things thanks to a little one who prefers to make up his own words.

Cococonio, for example. A three year old's word for volcano, or a distant mystical land at the edge of knowledge? I bag everything.

Cabbit
05-04-2016, 06:41 AM
Definitely baby. I'm biased though as I have an almost two year old and am completely smitten. Oddly enough, I finally have time to write now that I am a parent (naptime!) which I had a harder time doing while working.
Good writing comes from experiencing life. You can always find time to write if it is what you love. Children don't stay small forever. You have a limited window with which to have children.
Then again, books don't usually wake you up at 2 am with a poopy diaper......

Anna Spargo-Ryan
05-04-2016, 06:46 AM
Baby! My kids are nearly teenagers. I would love to have a little baby.

I balance writing and children by being divorced and self-employed, and having kids who are in high school. They hardly need me at all. I wish they needed me! I just sit at my desk and type away and think about their soft little baby faces and have a quiet sob.

darkangel77
05-26-2016, 06:56 PM
I know I'm late to this thread, but, most definitely: Book.

Never had a burning desire to have a baby, and I'm not particularly good with kids. I don't think I was born with maternal instinct.

Now, if it was publishing a book or having lots of animals...then it'd be a much harder choice :tongue

nighttimer
05-26-2016, 07:44 PM
Book. We've had all the babies we care to and lemme tell you books are better than babies.



Books stay where you put them.

Books don't make a racket when they fall down the stairs.

Books don't make your house smell.

Books will never wake you at ungodly hours of the night and keep you awake until ungoldy hours of the morning.

You can sell a book and never get hassled by the cops and children services.

Books don't poop.

Myrealana
05-26-2016, 08:16 PM
I think my babies will be grown up before my book is finished.

Write_At_1st_Light
05-26-2016, 09:29 PM
Baby all the way. Babies are merely the future of the human race, they invent their own language and somehow laugh and burp simultaneously.

I was married twice but never was lucky enough to meet that right woman. That's a tough gambit, especially today. But I wish I had (or will). Woulda been nice to raise a few kiddies.

Book published? Nearly impossible today unless you self-publish. Plus, reading for entertainment is dropping precipitously as we all know - but are reticent to acknowledge. And what if you leap the impossible hurdle and your book gets officially published and then most folks won't read it or don't even like it after they've read it? And yet - EVERYone likes babies. It's the sure bet.

KTC
05-26-2016, 10:42 PM
Book published? Nearly impossible today unless you self-publish.

THIS IS TERRIBLE MIS-INFORMATION. Please disregard it, anyone who is hoping to get published.

KTC
05-26-2016, 10:43 PM
My babies are having babies. My work there is done. I would not change anything. I love my babies. And I love my babies' babies. And I love my published book babies.

AW Admin
05-26-2016, 11:46 PM
Book published? Nearly impossible today unless you self-publish. [/quotee]

This is just flat-out wrong.

[QUOTE=Write_At_1st_Light;9843333]Plus, reading for entertainment is dropping precipitously as we all know - but are reticent to acknowledge. And what if you leap the impossible hurdle and your book gets officially published and then most folks won't read it or don't even like it after they've read it?

This is not exactly accurate, either. It's an enormously reductive unsupported assertion regarding a very complicated set of data.

In fact


here is no indication that the intensity of book reading over the years has permanently shifted in one direction or another, according to the Pew Research surveys and similar polls by Gallup.

See: Pew Research (http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/10/19/slightly-fewer-americans-are-reading-print-books-new-survey-finds/)

nighttimer
05-27-2016, 12:09 AM
Book published? Nearly impossible today unless you self-publish. Plus, reading for entertainment is dropping precipitously as we all know - but are reticent to acknowledge. And what if you leap the impossible hurdle and your book gets officially published and then most folks won't read it or don't even like it after they've read it? And yet - EVERYone likes babies. It's the sure bet.

It's a sure bet there will be more babies made than books for one reason: They're easier to make. Don't kid yourself. Everyone doesn't like babies. A lot of people like them as long as they belong to somebody else.

My babies were great though...:heart:

As far as the impossibility of getting a book published, there still seems to be plenty of writers writing, agents agenting and publishers publishing despite your gloomy observations. I've yet to see Amazon, Barnes & Noble or my local independent bookstore close because they didn't have any books to peddle to the public.

Sorry, but I simply reject the premise. To accept it would mean I was wrong not to stay in the military for 20 years or go off to veterinary school, and I'm not wrong.

Write_At_1st_Light
05-27-2016, 02:27 AM
[QUOTE=Write_At_1st_Light;9843333]Book published? Nearly impossible today unless you self-publish. [/quotee]

This is just flat-out wrong.



This is not exactly accurate, either. It's an enormously reductive unsupported assertion regarding a very complicated set of data.

In fact



See: Pew Research (http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/10/19/slightly-fewer-americans-are-reading-print-books-new-survey-finds/)
As long as we're doing quotes:


If kids are avoiding eye contact, they are avoiding books even more. Work by the Pew Research Center and other outfits have confirmed the testimony of teachers and parents and the evidence of one’s eyes. Few late teen-agers are reading many books. A recent summary of studies cited by Common Sense Media indicates that American teen-agers are less likely to read “for fun” at seventeen than at thirteen. The category of reading “for fun” is itself a little depressing, since it divides reading into duty (for school) and gratification (sitting on a beach towel), as if the two were necessarily opposed. My own observation, after spending a lot of time talking to teen-agers in recent years: reading anything serious has become a chore, like doing the laundry or prepping a meal for a kid brother. Or, if it’s not a chore, it’s just an activity, like swimming or shopping, an activity like any other. It’s not something that runs through the rest of their lives. In sum, reading has lost its privileged status; few kids are ashamed that they’re not doing it much. The notion that you should always have a book going—that notion, which all real readers share, doesn’t flourish in many kids. Often, they look at you blankly when you ask them what they are reading on their own.

Full article:
http://www.newyorker.com/culture/cultural-comment/books-smell-like-old-people-the-decline-of-teen-reading

Our brand new, zippy-fast culture - with its tweets and texts and promise of drones delivering your goodies just minutes after you order: Big contributors to the decline of book-reading. It's not just teens, as quoted above. It's also we more long-in-the-toothers who aren't picking up books nearly as often as we once did.

Anyway, be it far from me to reveal the cold, hard facts about current reading habits. I'm only a writer and truth of same - at least here at AW - is clearly unwelcome. I'll duck out, on a permanent basis. Writers? Keep on writing. Just don't quit that day job.

Take care, y'all! It's been fun! :)

Helix
05-27-2016, 02:27 AM
And yet - EVERYone likes babies. It's the sure bet.

This is terrible misinformation too.

Brightdreamer
05-27-2016, 05:06 AM
Books will never wake you at ungodly hours of the night and keep you awake until ungoldy hours of the morning.




Spoken like someone who has never pulled an all-nighter of "Just one more chapter... can't go to sleep until I finish just one more chapter!"

(Bonus points if it happens on a work night. ;) )

nighttimer
05-27-2016, 04:45 PM
Anyway, be it far from me to reveal the cold, hard facts about current reading habits. I'm only a writer and truth of same - at least here at AW - is clearly unwelcome. I'll duck out, on a permanent basis. Writers? Keep on writing. Just don't quit that day job.

Take care, y'all! It's been fun! :)

As far as flounces go, it sure doesn't sound like its been fun, but if ya gotta go, ya gotta go.
:gone:



Spoken like someone who has never pulled an all-nighter of "Just one more chapter... can't go to sleep until I finish just one more chapter!"

(Bonus points if it happens on a work night. ;) )

Been there. Done that. But that's still a choice cranked up to a compulsion. Books don't make you sit up all damn night until you're bleary-eyed in the A.M. Babies will do that just to mess with your mind. Malicious little buggers...

Myrealana
05-27-2016, 04:58 PM
Been there. Done that. But that's still a choice cranked up to a compulsion.
So is parenting, really.

They may cry in the middle of the night, but if you ignore them long and hard enough, they stop.

Not that I ever...

Well...:tongue

Lauram6123
05-27-2016, 05:05 PM
Babies will do that just to mess with your mind. Malicious little buggers...

When I was a new mom, another more seasoned mom said something to me I'll never forget. "Babies. As soon as they're mobile, they'll start f*cking with you." And boy was she right. Books don't have the same tenacity.

DeannaR
05-29-2016, 07:26 AM
I'm with darkangel77. Book. No hesitation, hands down, book. I am terrified of kids. they cry around me, I don't know how to comfort them. I don't know what I'm supposed to do. When all my friends babysat I studied, or worked labour jobs. Now, if you had said Book or Puppy?? Tough call.

I post in humour but please let me add, I highly highly respect parents it is something I do not think I could do. Bravo to you all!

Simpain
05-29-2016, 06:08 PM
Right now? Book all the way! A baby is a huge responsibility and I'm not sure I'm up to it yet. I'm still in high school, I live with my parents and I don't have a job. Yeah, I definitely choose to publish a book. And then another book, and after that book, another book. :tongue

frenchpickle123
06-03-2016, 10:28 PM
I know a lot of people compare their books to babies, but in all honesty... as a mother, it is NOT the same! I have cried and lost sleep and loved my books, but the depth and breadth of the tears and lost sleep and love that I have for my son and daughter are so much more intense and wonderful.

It would be heartbreaking to give up my dream of being published, but for me, my kids and my husband are NUMBER ONE in my life. Everything else is secondary to them.

Babies all the way! :)

BryanFischer
06-03-2016, 11:41 PM
Baby. I have three kids that keep me from writing every week, but I'd rather have them than a finished manuscript. Besides, the perspective they offer is invaluable to your writing!

M.S. Wiggins
06-04-2016, 12:11 AM
It's a sure bet there will be more babies made than books for one reason: They're easier to make.

Um, yep. They sure are!


Don't kid yourself. Everyone doesn't like babies. A lot of people like them as long as they belong to somebody else.

This is how I feel about my 'imaginary' neighbors' babies. I promise they will eventually find their fictitious way into my next manuscript—just like their maybe-loud home renovating construction workers found a way into my last one. It went something like this: ...[character name], the tweaked-out ex-heroin addict building contractor from New Jersey says, "[Unsavory things]." ***However, this is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are strictly the product of my imagination. Any resemblance is purely coincidental and should be perceived as such.*** ;)


My babies were great though...:heart:

Yeah, yeah, everyone else's babies, along with their endlessly-barking dogs and asshole cats, and your parked-in-my-spot house-guests are fantastic, right? Shall we keep them closer to the heart, then? At least closer to home?! Like, inside, parked in front of your own damn house, and noiseless . . . pretty please?!!!


As far as the impossibility of getting a book published, there still seems to be plenty of writers writing, agents agenting and publishers publishing despite your gloomy observations. I've yet to see Amazon, Barnes & Noble or my local independent bookstore close because they didn't have any books to peddle to the public.

Sorry, but I simply reject the premise. To accept it would mean I was wrong not to stay in the military for 20 years or go off to veterinary school, and I'm not wrong.

Thank you for your service.
And I like the way you think.

M.S. Wiggins
06-04-2016, 01:13 AM
Oh, and to answer the OP question (Geez, sorry . . . got caught up in elsewhere-ness), my for-what-it’s-worth advice is: Sow your oats first. By oats-sowing, I mean:

•Do the things you want to do first.
•Accomplish the goals, hopes, and dreams your youngster-mind created (←at the very, very least, begin them now).
•MOST importantly: do the nutty things you’ve always wanted to do and see the places you’ve always wanted to see (←while you can still afford the costs and while not deeply entrenched in commitments).


Definitely travel. Beg, borrow, or steal leave i.o.u’s. But absolutely see the world. It’s a bank of knowledge, and it’s a wealth that sparks creativity.

WriterDude
06-04-2016, 10:36 PM
Books don't need toilet training.

M.S. Wiggins
06-04-2016, 10:44 PM
Books don't need toilet training.

Hmm...

...with some, it Depends®.

K.P. Iris
06-05-2016, 12:07 AM
•Do the things you want to do first.
•Accomplish the goals, hopes, and dreams your youngster-mind created (←at the very, very least, begin them now).
•MOST importantly: do the nutty things you’ve always wanted to do and see the places you’ve always wanted to see (←while you can still afford the costs and while not deeply entrenched in commitments).
THIS. This is pretty much why I've chosen books over babies (that and my tendency to be heavy handed and tossing things about, not great for physically handling babies). Having to deal with my family over the past decade, I've learned that I'm not the supportive type I thought I was growing up. I'd rather just let the person fail and learn from that (pretty much how I learn new things, just telling me what to do never worked well enough). So child-rearing not really for me. Books all the way...even if I never officially publish one.

Hattingmad
06-05-2016, 12:40 AM
Mmyep. As with others here, I'd pick books over babies any day. Not a nurturing individual, really, me.

Through a series of circumstances, I find myself in possession of a childfree mindset and a partial hysterectomy before the age of 30. So a) babies aren't possible for me, and b) even if they were, I'd still pick books. The 7 or 8 bookcases strewn throughout my home are a pretty good indicator, I think.

WriterDude
06-05-2016, 12:29 PM
Books don't sidle in to your bed at the crack of dawn and repeat, 'can I watch Thomas on your phone?' until they get the right answer.

Shayleigh
06-11-2016, 11:38 PM
That's a hard one! I've pretty much always wanted a family and never thought of writing as a career, money maker etc. I wouldn't like to give it up but from some beautiful kiddies I think I could.

StoryofWoe
06-13-2016, 01:56 AM
Book, definitely. No interest in having children, though I look forward to being one of those awesome surrogate aunts who serves brownies for breakfast. Since I'm a romance/erotica writer, I've also offered to handle the Birds and the Bees conversation when the time comes. :tongue

SamGlass
06-13-2016, 02:58 AM
At the moment? Book. I'm getting ready to dive headlong into law school, and I figure it'll be hard enough without a tiny person to look after. At least book characters don't get sick if I forget to feed them.

stevew84
06-14-2016, 08:13 PM
I have a 6 month old and writing a book...so I got both, haha.