OK, so I’m putting the finishing touches on IA: B.O.S.S., a middle grade sci-fi novel and part two of the IA series. It makes sense to talk about writing or “the writer’s life” in real time, in the real world, not theory. Well, first let’s have some fun. Since I’m currently writing in the sci-fi/fantasy genre, here’s my fantasy, the writer’s life I envision:
I write for living, and make a whole lot of money doing it, so I get up when I want to, which is early because I’m a morning person. Here’s the schedule.
• 6:00 – 6:30 Short workout like Rocky in the first Rocky movie, music and all, right?
• 6:30 – 7:00 Clean up and eat breakfast not too big or little, but definitely healthy to start the day.
• 7:00 – 8:00 Connect with some of my many fans and followers, and I have a lot of ‘em. Remember, dream big.
• 8:00 – 9:00 Read something, anything to warm up the creative muscles, get the juices flowing.
• 9:00 – 11:00 Write! I just happen to be working on IA: Union, the third in the IA series and the muse is definitely on my side today.
• 11:00 – 11:30 Lunch, my biggest meal of the day, also healthy. A healthy body produces a healthy mind conducive for creativity.
• 11:30 – 2:30 18 holes of golf. Nothing like staying physically connected with nature.
• 2:30 – 3:00 Nap or meditation. One usually leads to the other for me. Ha!
• 3:00 – 4:00 Read. Preferably something in the genre that I’m working in. I’ve been meaning to get into “Kindred” by Octavia Butler. There’s no time like the present.
• 4:00 – 5:00 Writing/editing! remember it’s what I do for a living in the world I’ve just built for myself. I’m writing “Union” if the muse has returned, editing B.O.S.S. if not.
• 5:00 – 6:00 Reading some more of “Kindred”. I’m really getting into this one.
• 6:00 – 6:30 Dinner and nothing but dinner. Like Yoda, my favorite philosopher said, “Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing. Hmph.”
• 6:30 – 8:30 Watch a film for enjoyment and a snack. Remember, it’s all about storytelling in any form. I think I’ll go with “Avatar” tonight for the umpteenth time.
• 8:30 – 9:00 Meditation: nurturing that soul again, you know?
• 9:00 – 9:30 This one’s hard to put down.
• 9:30 – 11:00 Recency Writing: Primacy Recency effect says we remember the first and last items in a list. I apply that to the first and last things I do in a day: Write, and it works for me.
• 11:00 Bedtime whether I like it or not.
Now for my reality:
• 5:00 – 5:30 Struggle to wake up and eat
• 5:30 – 6:15 Commute my daughter to school and get to work.
• 6:30 – 7:30 Prepare to teach, grade papers, make copies of assignments, lesson plan, work on my homework, fantasize about writing, tweet, post on Instagram, Facebook, and/or Goodreads maybe.
• 7:40 – 11:40 Teach, yay!
• 11:40 – 12:40 Lunch and find a room in my building where I will not be disturbed by anyone so I can write or revise. Sometimes that’s my Grand Cherokee.
• 12:40 – 2:40 Teach, yay, not so much.
• 2:40 – 3:00 Dismiss students, yay again.
• 3:00 – 3:30 Commute to pick up my daughter, fighting to stay awake as the bright sun has become my sleeping pill.
• 4:00 – 11:00 This depends on a multitude of possibilities my daughter has in store for me, from going to the library to basketball or tennis practice/games/matches or guitar or piano lessons/performances etc. This will determine whether I can read, write, or tackle social media in the close quarters of my Cherokee, a deserted high school corridor, or a preferred library. Meals are optional and erratic at best.
The point is, the fantasy is not likely. So what is your writing life like? How can you plan to fit the essentials of reading, writing, and nurturing the mind, body, and soul in your hectic day-to-day? Of course, no plan or list will look the same, but it should contain the essentials and depending on your goals a few of the extras, like time for social media, the lifeblood of the self-published author.