Wednesday, 5 August 2015

A Writer's Day


How does a best-selling, full-time writer divide up their day?

I don't know, but I can tell you how I divide mine up. <ba dum tsh>

I need structure. It needn't be something super-rigid like a suit of full-plate armour; you have to be able to bend and adapt. But on days when you've no talks to give, no meetings, no research trips, no courses, no-one to rescue as your heroic alter-ego, it is good to make best use of time. This is the pattern I try to follow.
  • 9-9.30am Communications
  • 9.30-11am Creative Writing
  • 11am-12pm Writing CPD
  • 12pm-1pm Food. Fuss the cat. Shoot a zombie. Practise pole dancing. Walk in the garden.
  • 1-2.30pm Creative Writing
  • 2.30-3.30pm Business Stuff
  • 3.30-5pm Creative Writing
  • 5-5.30pm Communications
I find it helps prevent the opposing demons of distraction or paralysis. I know what to do, and at the end of the day I've got something to show for it. What do the headings mean?

Communications: a good way to start and end each day, without them dominating your day. You know urgent emails will get dealt with. This can include comms on Facebook or Twitter or discussion fora; also writing blog posts.

Creative Writing: oh come on... Books 'n' stuff. Currently I'm working on two short story collections, a horror one and a literary one. Rough goal to have one finished by January 1st. This time can also be spent plotting (mwuhahah), editing my writing, or researching something I'm going to write about.

Writing CPD: we're always learning. A bit of time each day for reading books about writing, grammar, the dictionary ... articles of writing tips ... notes from courses and so on. A single tip or fact each day to dwell on. Hopefully I can apply it to the creative writing I do or plan that day.

Business Stuff: anything to do with being self-employed. Tax and finances; guides on running a business; working on editing services offered to others; website work; marketing/publicity. I'm currently putting together a business plan for future services in conjunction with a small-business help organisation. I'm also doing an online course in Successful Editorial Freelancing with the Publishing Training Centre.

So there you go. Sound like heaven?
Share:

1 comment: