A typical day...
I gave up the day job nearly a year ago to write full time (it was a scary decision and it still frightens me now!) and I must admit that it took me a while to get into a routine. I had been so used to getting up ridiculously early to write for a couple of hours, then coming home from work and trying to fit in editing and the rest of the admin type things that writers have to do that the change was a bit of a culture shock.
I bumped into a colleague yesterday who wanted to know what I did all day, now that I could please myself, and it made me take stock of how my day-to-day life has changed.
I still wake at silly o'clock, and I still do some kind of writing related activity at that time in the morning (I actually wrote this post at four a.m this morning) but I don't write as early these days. I save that for after breakfast and after I've walked the dog, when my mind is free of the clutter of answering emails and responding to social media posts, or discussing book covers, or research, or... You get the idea!
I also now have time to potter in the garden more, to enjoy cooking rather than just throw a meal together and hope for the best. And I have time to be kind to myself - on those days when the words don't flow or I feel under the weather, I don't fret as much about not reaching my word count for the day.
It sounds lovely, doesn't it, and I'm not complaining and I'm very grateful that I'm able to do this. However, I still have to have some kind of a routine to get things done, and for the first few months of becoming a full-time writer I found I got less done then than I did before. I had been blissfully setting up a writing schedule, only to find that I had been crowned the Procrastination Queen, and had less focus than a magpie faced with a shopful of shiny things.
A year on and I think I might have cracked it. I make sure I get the required number of words on the page as soon as Poppy the Puppy is walked, and before I allow myself to play on the internet, or read, or clean the oven (procrastination rearing its head again), and it seems to be working. I have to be strict with myself, though.
EDIT: I've come back to this post at the end of the day, to say that I've done no writing whatsoever today - so maybe I haven't cracked it after all!
Here's what I've been reading
There are so many secrets within the pages of this book, and they are all heartbreaking. Although most of the individual character's stories are incredibly sad, the overall tone of the book is one of hope as Maggie resolves issues from her past and discovers a brand new family.
This isn't an easy read, and might be especially difficult for some people as it discusses the loss of a child, adoption and strained mother-daughter relationships. However, these matters are handled well and with empathy, and I turned the last page feeling that there was hope for all those within its covers.