The winter holidays are on us. For me, that generally means two things: Assisting in art shows for Triskele Moon Studios jewelry, and the inevitable full-court press of the day job insisting on the arbitrary January 1 release of … well, whatever the big thing is this year. There’s not a lot of spare time that isn’t being put into keeping the house in order, packing and packaging, and keeping tabs on who’s going on vacation when.

That’s not to say there aren’t places here and there, quiet times when the darkness of winter lets us pour ourselves into a chair and allow a little relaxation. That relaxation, for many of us, comes in the form of consumption. Catching up on Hell on Wheels, reading the latest from our fellow authors, surfing Pinterest or sipping the second eggnog of the evening.

More than any other time of year, it’s difficult to make the time to sit down and create. The darkness saps us, the cold drives us to sit at other people’s fires rather than rekindle our own. It’s more important than ever to figure out which river our time has rushed down, and where we would rather it pooled.

People other than I have discussed the usefulness of tracking our spent minutes. On the one hand, it’s filling out yet another punchcard – and isn’t that why we wanted to write for a living? On the other … it really, really works. Realizing that over the course of three days I’ve had ten hours in which I *could* have been writing is sobering, and guess what? It’s led directly to this post.

If writing is what you love, there’s always time in which to do it. It’s time that’s easy to lose track of, though, so make a point of watching where your attention goes.