Today I’m delighted to participate in the blog tour for Second Chance at First Love and host a guest post from Zoe Allison, the author of this contemporary romance.
How many times have you said ‘If only I had more time…’ or ‘I’d love to do this, but where can I find the time?’ Here is Zoe’s answer to these common frustrations:
How do you find the time?
In real life I’m a doctor, a wife, and a mother of two young children. When I finally came out as a writer to my friends and family the question that I was asked most frequently was ‘how do you find the time?’ I still get asked this question often, by the same friends and family, and now also from people in the writing/book communities whenever they discover that I’m a doctor and a mother, as well as a writer.
My real answer to this question is the same as when people used to ask it when I began running several years ago in order to improve my wellbeing, and managed to get much fitter as a result. My female friends would notice a different in my physical form and ask me how I found the time, and I would tell them that I made the time. This is how I now approach building in time to write.
The first issue is carving out a protected section of time that is yours to do whatever it is you need to do. I use the word ‘need’ deliberately, here. We all need a little bit of space that is for us alone, to partake in whatever past time or hobby brings us joy. This is immensely important for self-care and something I see neglected particularly in women, and especially in those who have families. The weight of their other responsibilities can weigh heavily on their minds and they don’t feel able to take any time for themselves. As a result, their sense of self is gradually eroded away, leading to mental health struggles.
The second issue is that after deciding when this unit of time is going to be (and that’s different for everyone) you have to take that time, rather than asking permission to use it for this purpose. You make the decision and then distance yourself from your guilt. This is both internalised guilt and also the guilt that society bestows upon women whenever we try to achieve something that is just for us and not for someone else’s benefit. You do not need to feel guilty about this, everybody has to nurture their sense of self, and the activities that you feel you ‘should’ be doing instead can wait until your allocated period is up. Or, if somebody else can shoulder a little bit of the burden and perform those other activities for you during that duration, or at another moment, then so much the better.
So, that’s all there is to it for me:
- Identify the time;
- Claim the time;
- Absolve the guilt.
Though it is easier said than done—in psychological terms—because I would say that internalised guilt is the main barrier to overcome. However once you do, your wellbeing and that of those around you is enriched as a result. Plus, after the year we’ve all had, I think this issue is now more important than ever.
Second Chance at First Love
Eva Mathers is a successful woman, except for when it comes to matters of the heart. When she returns home to Yorkshire as a pending divorcee, she realises her childhood friend and first love Damon Evans is also newly single. It’s a pity he’s never noticed her romantically and had no idea that she was in love with him at school. But at least they can support each other as friends again.
Damon is attempting to adjust to life sharing the kids with his ex. His reconnection with Eva is strong, but she was always too good for him and made her indifference clear after they drifted apart during their younger years. In any case, she still seems to be hung up on her charismatic ex-husband. Eva is hiding things from Damon, secrets from her past. He wants to be there for her, so why can’t she let him in?
Eva is dealing with trauma, but she won’t confide in her loved ones. Can Damon help her break down her walls before it’s too late and they miss their second chance at first love?
Zoe lives in Scotland with her husband and two children. A medic by day, she
started writing in her spare time as a means to counter burn out and found that this was a
balm for the soul.
She is a fan of the romantic genre and its ‘happy ever after’ ethos. A sharp contrast to what she can, at times, see in her day job. Zoe is keen for the female lead in romantic fiction to disabuse stereotypes and walk on an equal footing with her male counterparts. She prefers male leads
who do not display signs of toxic masculinity and believes that positive masculinity is
much more attractive to women and healthier for men.
Social Media Links –
Thank you very much to Zoe for her wonderful post!
If you would like to find out more about Zoe Allisson’s book Second Chance at First Love, here is the full blog tour schedule: