Sunday, March 4, 2012

One Writer's Routine - A Day In The Writing Life

Almost every day I'm asked by well-meaning individuals ranging from family to acquaintances if I make any money with my writing.  They wonder if it's worth it and to me, even outside the money, it is.

They also wonder if I work too hard or too many hours.  With good intention they suggest I should take a few days off or not work as hard.

It doesn't work like that.

For all the people who've wondered just what an average day is like for me, I'm offering an inside look into a day in the life and one writer's routine.

My day begins early.  Very early.  Before daylight early.  My husband rises by 4am each morning because he's required to begin work at 5:30amm each day.  Some days I get up with him - sometimes I'm up before he is.  At the latest, I sleep in until 5am.  After a cup or two of good strong coffee, first cup sweetened, the rest black, I open up the laptop and get going.  Before I get started in earnest, I brush out my waist length hair and twist it into a bun on top of my head.  It's not just to keep the hair out of the way, it's also a routine which puts me into a "professional, let's get to work" mindset.

I start out by checking my emails.  Then I do a Google search to see where I'm mentioned or what work of my is up.  By doing this, I often find reviews of my books before I'm notified, if my local column is online this week, and more.  I've found mentions of my books on blogs and more. 

Then I attend to my blogs.  I have several - A Page In The Life, Author In The House (for other authors' guest appearances), Rebel Writer: Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy, Seanachie Stories - Tuesday Tales And More, Lee Ann's Weekend Dirty Dozen.  I also am a writer or guest blog on a regular basis for several others including The Romance Studio, Pop Culture Divas, ParaPosse, and more.
  
Then I do a swift drive-by of social network sites including Facebook and Twitter, checking up on what's new and happening.  I do some promotion as well, vital to keeping my name and novels in the public mind.

By then, it's about time on weekdays to rouse my three kids, two teens, one middle schooler to begin their day so I switch from professional to mom mode for the next hour and a half.  After they're on their way to school or after I drop them off, it's back home to do another quick email check and then onto the day's work.

Some days I'm doing edits for an upcoming release, a painstaking process but a vital one.  I may be writing my local newspaper column, catching up guest blogs spots I have coming up in the near future, or hopefully working on my current WIP.  Working on the current project is the best.

I write most of the morning, popping in and out of my email, pausing to do laundry or run a few errands.  Sometimes I'm reading work for other writers too.

I pause for a quick lunch after fielding phone calls or vetting emails.  Then post lunch, I clean up the kitchen from both breakfast and lunch.  Next I get supper in train.  If it's something which needs long term cooking, I get it started.  Or I plan what I'm serving and the accompanying menu.  If it's a day I have time, I may stir up a dessert for my family.

With any luck at all, after a few basic housekeeping chores, I manage a few more hours of writing before it's time to meet my kids after school.  Then I shift into full mom mode to get the evening meal on the table, clean up afterward, and hear about my kids' day.  If any of my three has events or evening activities, I attend.  More often than not I find myself running out to the store to pick up something one or the other needs or for milk or bread or something.

I talk on the phone with my mother each evening and then I may spend another hour or so just surfing or doing a little promotion or online housekeeping.

At the very end of the day I take off my shoes, settle into my favorite corner of the couch, and watch some television.  In fair and fine weather I may sit outside on the porch or deck instead or take a stroll around the neighborhood, a small town subdivision which passes for suburbs in the Ozarks.

Then I fall into bed and it all begins again the next day.

It's a day in the writing life and one writer's routine.

1 comment:

  1. I find this very illuminating and inspiring :-)
    Thanks for sharing.
    When I hear people going on about writing 'not being a proper job' I offer to take their televison away for them. It often takes a little while for the penny to drop, but they never make that comment again!! LOL

    ReplyDelete

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