A Day In The Life
I've talked about how long it takes to write a book and I've talked a little bit about my process. Today I thought it would be fun to let you know what a 'normal' work day looks like for me.
I am not an early bird, you'll hear about the 5am Writers Club, a group of authors who get up early in the morning in order to start their writing day at 5am. I completely understand the logic behind this, especially if you have small children or a day job. However, the idea of getting up at that time of day for anything is not appealing to me. I have a date with my pillow until long after that, but hats off to them.
These days my alarm goes off at 8.30 which gives me a bit of time to get properly awake. I try to exercise every day and I do this before breakfast because if I didn't I wouldn't, then I have a quick shower, grab some breakfast and then I'm ready to write.
Typically I'm sitting at my laptop at 10.30. This is my dedicated WIP time so I'm either writing or I'm editing. I'll stick at this till about 12.30, at which point I stop to get lunch organised. I still tend to take a full lunch break, sometimes after I've had something to eat I'll go out for a walk, if you subscribe to my newsletter then you'll have heard me mention that I live pretty close to the beautiful Fife coast. Other days I'll watch a bit of TV.
The afternoons are about all other things writing (and sometimes house work and cooking). The afternoon is where I'll do social media things, write my blog, do work on any courses I'm taking, listen to podcasts etc (these are a great multi-task option for when I'm cooking or cleaning).
I knock off at around 5pm.
Since I was made redundant last year I've tried to maintain a standard work style day and this has generally worked for me, although I think it's really important to have flex and none of the above is a rigid timetable.
In my two hours actual writing time I'll write 1000-2000 words, sometimes less depending on where I am in the process. Keeping office hours doesn't mean that I don't think about my work 24/7 because I think like most authors it's always there in the back of my brain no matter what I'm doing. For example yesterday in the shower I was thinking through a thread of book 4 and that helped myself solidify the motive of one of the characters.
I do a decent amount of thinking in the shower, probably because it's one of the times my mind isn't fixed on anything. And thinking is an important part of the process, I like it when I'm somewhere I can talk my thoughts through out loud - another reason the shower is a good space.
As a rule I don't schedule writing time at the weekends, but if the mood takes me and I have the time available I'll happily spend an hour or two tapping away at the keyboard. It's the same with holidays, I rarely leave my laptop behind, because I know if I do I'll regret it.
It's not glamorous and my time is mainly spent at my desk, but I love having this opportunity to write full time, it's amazing to wake up in the morning to do the thing I love.