Thursday, 16 June 2011

Working day of a writer…

Or perhaps the title should be the working day of this writer. Talking with non-writing friends, it is alarming how frequently the M and I words come up. Muse and Inspiration. When I tell them that it’s a job like any other, that I work similar hours to them, they look at me as if I just exited the shuttle from the planet Zog. So here for those of you who are interested is my day.
6am – out of bed with husband. Follow him into shower.
6.30am. Sit and check mails with a cup of tea (thank you, Paul). Plan day’s work if I didn’t do that the previous day.
7am Walk dog. This is one of the best parts of the day for me. I have to be careful with my knee, but try to get a good walk in on the beach or in the park.
8am Back home. Prepare dinner, if possible to the stage of putting it in the oven so all that needs to happen is the oven gets turned on at the right time.
8.30 Breakfast. Coffee. Read
9am At desk. Check day’s plan. Use a the timer on the phone to work in set periods with intervals for coffee, getting up and moving about. Basically, it is bum in chair and words on page.
12pm Lunch
I am currently trying to work in an extra 15-30 minutes of walking in the middle of the day, but the knee dictates what I can do. However, following Jurgen Wolff’s suggestion, this period of walking/strolling or whatever is useful for sorting out plot points, thinking about characters etc.
1pm Back at desk. Ditto the morning. Last job, clear desk and plan out next day’s work.
4pm Go down, feed dog, fill dishwasher. Sit and wait for husband to come home and pinch his iPad in the meantime to catch up on my reading.
So that’s my routine. If the weather is foul, I stop work earlier and sit in the bath to think about plot points or characterization or settings etc. John Mortimer used to do this and I agree with him that proximity to water is a great thought liberator.
So, now you can all see, it IS just a job, like any other. But far, far more enjoyable than most.


  1. That's exactly like my day - except I get up later and am usually at my desk until 7pm. I also use the dog walks, the best part of the day, for plotting and thinking about characters.

    People often ask if I wait for the muse before I write. If I did that, I'd never get a book written.

  2. You have a well structured plan of work and I bet you get loads done. I live in Lanzarote so walking in the sunshine (and next to water!) is also part of my day but I'm not as well organised as you. I do try....