Last month I blogged about Maybe This Time and babies in romance novels. Today I thought I’d give you a peek at a typical day in my life while I was writing the book.
Dateline: Wednesday. I like to rise early but if I haven’t had enough sleep the writing suffers. So, no alarms for me. However, I have an early gym class. It’s a struggle to get up because the night before I’ve been to Toastmasters. But this is my favorite instructor so I push myself, bleary-eyed out the door at 7.30 am.
After the gym, I have coffee with my friends from the class. Having satisfied my need for human contact, I go home, have a shower and read the front page of the newspaper while I eat breakfast. Then I get myself another coffee and head for the computer.
So far the life of a romance novelist is really glamorous, isn’t it? I wish the clichés were true and it was all feather boas and bon bons.
No sooner do I sit down than Sparky, my Jack Russell terrier, puts his paw on my knee and gives me his best pitiful puppy dog look. I scratch his ears and promise a walk before lunch.
I should go straight to my work in progress but every writer has rituals. I check my email. Who knows, maybe I’ve won the lottery. I check out Facebook: click ‘like, like, like,’ chuckle at a post, watch a video, make a few comments. I try to think up a witty, interesting post but my brain is blank. Just as well. Don’t want to use up all my creativity.
Finally I open my work in progress and try to pick up where I left off yesterday. Some days the writing flows like a stream in spring flood. Other days it trickles as I feel my way through the story. When the writing slows it usually means I need to go deeper into the characters or else fast forward to where something interesting happens. Today my characters aren’t cooperating. They insist on standing around making inane conversation about nothing much.
I put on Intense Creativity, a BrainSync tape by Kelly Howell. Usually it sparks the flow of words and ideas. My brain is resisting being stimulated today.
A cup of tea might help. While the water boils I read page two of the newspaper.
Cup in hand I go back to work. Might just check out Writer Unboxed while I’m drinking the tea. After all, you can’t drink and type at the same time.
Okay, where was I? Hero and heroine are standing around talking about horses eating grass. Yawn. These two need to do something. It’s way too soon for the first kiss. They’re not even sure they like each other yet. Hmm, maybe the problem is too much ambivalence.
I’ll let my subconscious ruminate on that while I play a game of Solitaire. Just one game, though. Okay, maybe two. That was a fast game so I squeeze in a third.
Stop it! Must. Write.
I have a daily goal of 2000-3000 words. I won’t quit until I reach that goal. I look to my Muse, hoping for inspiration. Nope. She’s got nothing for me. She must be asleep.
I hurry the hero and heroine along to the next scene. Later I’ll either rework the dud scene or cut it. Finally, something clicks in my brain! When I next look at the clock I’ve written six pages.
Sparky looks hopeful when I get up but by now I’m hungry. Later, puppy, sorry. I eat tuna salad and read page three of the paper. Because it was a gym day and I’m behind schedule I don’t allow myself my usual twenty minutes of reading after lunch. Sob.
Back to the computer. Quick email, Twitter and Facebook check. I manage to write another five pages I’m happy with before I take a break to walk the dog. The fresh air is full of delicious scents after a rain. It feels good to stretch my legs and straighten my hunched shoulders. It is a good life being a writer.
Back in the office I update my website, do more email and some Toastmaster stuff then call it quits. It’s been a good writing day. I’ve reached my quota at 2,300 words, and most of them I’ll probably keep. Plus I’ve left my characters in a good jumping off place for tomorrow.
What makes a good day for you, writing or otherwise?