What is a typical day like for you?

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Jaya
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What is a typical day like for you?

Post by Jaya » September 8th, 2010, 9:39 pm

I'm curious how many of you are busy and fit everything into your day. I often feel that I am not nearly as productive as I could be or that searching/reading is aimless, but I know it does help. It just feels like I spend time "perusing materials" and always feel overwhelmed.
I would like to know a typical day for all of you writers and busy-bodies. From morning wake up time to night sleep time. Early to rise and a busy, busy day? Set work and meal times? Set writing times? Any wasted time, any guilty pleasures, etc?

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dios4vida
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by dios4vida » September 9th, 2010, 11:13 am

I have a life that most people are jealous of. No job, no kids, just two cats and a husband who is super supportive of my writing habit. I do have several medical conditions that force me to rest for most of the day, but it's still a great life. Only housework and such keep me from writing or reading. You'd think that since I have so much time to myself I'd be able to write faster than I do, but it still takes me forever to finish a novel.
Brenda :)

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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by bellacatalina » September 9th, 2010, 4:49 pm

You're not alone. I have two small children and a husband who works from home as a film editor. We live in a small condo and I spend much of my day (when I'm home) attempting to keep the noise level somewhere below absolute chaos so my husband can focus--his work is sound sensitive. I'm the first to admit I'm unorganized, and I haven't yet reached the place where I can write in those few snatched moments, but maybe that will come as the youngest grows more self-sufficient. It's not that I need quiet as much as I need the head space to think... too many inevitable (and constant) interruptions over here: arguments to resolve, behinds to wipe, water bottles to fill, and the like. They're early risers, and waking at 4am to write doesn't appeal to me, not to mention my brain just doesn't work that early. Both still nap, but in the interest of physical health, we're using that time to exercise. I'm looking forward to the day I can take them to the park and not have to hover over them, but for now, it looks like I'll just have to continue with locking myself in the bathroom for ten minutes at a time ;>

Oh, and the internet, while full of awesome blogs on all things writing, definitely does not help--at some point I need to set it aside and just write. I get sidetracked.

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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by Harper Karcz » September 9th, 2010, 6:07 pm

I'm busy, but not in the same way from day to day, so I have to take a few minutes at night to mentally prepare my schedule for the next day. I find if I don't schedule my time -- even my free time -- I wind up whiling away hours on the Internet in the name of "research." I'm really, really trying to quit that. If I have a mental schedule of what I'm going to do, hour by hour, I tend to stick to it. If I have a "oh, I guess I'll write a bit in the afternoon" idea about a day, then you'll undoubtedly find me refreshing my Google Reader and watching YouTube videos. Structure -- I need it.

My job can be crazy, and lately I've had to travel a lot. That's the toughest thing to schedule around.

On the plus side, I have a saintly husband who enjoys doing most of the cooking and errands. He works a weird schedule and he's off in the early afternoons, so it just works better for him to do the food shopping and such.

The hardest thing for me is fitting in the stuff that isn't work or writing. Every evening, I feel like I have time to do my writing and one Other Thing, whether that other thing is calling my mother or going for a run or catching up on personal e-mail or watching a TV show. I figure out about a day in advance what the daily Other Thing is going to be, and then I stick to it (most of the time). Sometimes it all gets thrown out the window, say, if I have to work really late, or if I decide to go out with a friend, or if saintly husband and I go out for drinks or coffee. I try not to completely throw out the schedule more than one day a week, though.
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sierramcconnell
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by sierramcconnell » September 9th, 2010, 6:11 pm

When I'm not battling the endless challenge that is "chronic illness" (really, a catch all term for the multiple issues I have that aren't resolvable and only get worse), I try to put a normal day in at work as a Tier I Desktop Support Technician at a local call center. I'm not on the phones, I just support the people and admin staff that are. It's fun at times. Especially when I get to answer the questions for the people on the phone, or when calls escalate and we deescalate them.

Before work, I usually wake up on my own because my heart tells me it's time to take the pills. It's a good alarm system. It does this on the weekends, too though, the jerk. 6:30am.

I don't eat breakfast until I get to work, so I piddle around on the internet, clean out the dishwasher, eventually take a shower, and somehow, even with two hours before hand, end up at work right on time. I really need to learn time management or to stop avoiding work.

Lunch is fun. Lunch is when I don the funny hat (floppy or animal shaped) and have an adventure with the mp3 player. Or go to BN or the mall and edit on paper. Or just shop. It's eventful no matter what because I pretend I'm someone else for a while.

When I get ready to leave work, it's round two for pills. I don't need a reminder for that either, joy. XD I then leave work and go home to my singing out the window. I'm sure the other commutors are happy. I'm wearing a funny hat, they'll remember me when I'm famous. XD

I get home, maybe eat dinner, maybe flop in bed or on the couch. I might play with my dolls (hey, I'm almost 30, not dead), or work on my book if I have a chapter to beta or research to do. I might sew or plan an outfit. I have multiple hobbies. Or if I have a book to read, I'll go to bed early and lay in there for hours until my hand can't hold it up any more.

Weekends...weekends are spontaneous. Unless I clean. And even then it's never planned or I might hide in the bed and not get up to do it.
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by Emily J » September 9th, 2010, 6:42 pm

So I will be the first to admit that I work the typical office job, 9-5. It could be worse, my boss and most of my coworkers are pretty cool (note: most not all!) and since I have only been there for 2 years it hasn't quite begun to suck out my soul yet. There are times when my job does remind me of office space, however.

I will admit that I do occasionally comment on this site while I'm at work (sshh dont tell my boss!) but that's only when I dont have work to do. I guess depending on how often i post during the day one could figure out how busy the office is :)

Other than the aforementioned office job, there aren't too many demands on my time. Once in a blue moon I will actually get to the gym after work other than that it is make dinner, clean/chores around the apt then bed. The weekends are spontaneous but I usually find at least an hour or two to write either Friday or Sunday while still maintaining a social life.

Now I have tried, diligently, to make a writing schedule but it just never seems to work out. The weekends are shot, I don't usually have a lot of time to write and on weekdays there are still things that manage to pop up to ruin all my plans. Not always bad things, but you know, life gets in the way. So I have chucked my writing schedule out the window, instead, I just write whenever I have time. I find that my efficiency varies wildly. I will go for weeks without writing, then crank out a first draft in a month or so (I rule at NaNoWriMo). But while I can write quickly, I edit painstakingly slowly. Still, I average about 2 manuscripts a year with 1 manuscript edited per year (yes, my inner editor is slow as molasses though that includes rewrites).

There are times when I think "I would love to quit my job and write full time!" However I know myself, and know that apart from going broke, I would not be disciplined enough on my own. Surprisingly working the 9-5 helps me utilize my time more effectively. The same principle was true in high school; whenever I had a part time job I would get more homework done and pull better grades. So writing part time seems to be good for me, but that doesn't mean I don't dream of someday making money with my writing and not having to go to work!

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AnimaDictio
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by AnimaDictio » September 9th, 2010, 6:55 pm

Most mornings, I wake up around 7am. I either go for a jog or I don't before the 30 minute train to work. I love that 30 minutes. It's where I do some of my best writing. I have a semi-interesting 9-5 government job. I write during the non-interesting moments. I tend to do very little writing in the evening. Most evenings, I am playing music with my band or practicing by myself. I always write early Saturday morning before any of my needy friends can bother me. Sundays are the Lord's day.

Generally, I'm very busy. My days are scheduled a couple weeks in advance. I'm a goal-oriented person so I never go too long without writing. If I feel that I'm falling behind, I run everyone off and take a personal day.

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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by bellacatalina » September 10th, 2010, 5:23 pm

Harper Karcz wrote:The hardest thing for me is fitting in the stuff that isn't work or writing. Every evening, I feel like I have time to do my writing and one Other Thing <snip>
This is how I feel. Though usually by the time the kids are in bed, it comes down to either/or... and when I have to choose between writing or time with my hubby, my characters are bound to feel neglected ;)

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AMSchilling
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by AMSchilling » September 11th, 2010, 1:19 pm

Let's see.... Mon - Fri it's up at 6am, grab a desperately needed cup of coffee, and stare at the computer screen until my eyes start to focus. By 7am I'm on my way to drop the kid off at daycare, then heading out for a 35 mile commute to the day job. Home by 4:30 and then I have 45 minutes where I can get in a little writing or check email, then pick up the kid. Dinner and playtime until 8pm, half an hour to write while the hubby gives the kid a bath, then reading to her and bedtime for her which usually takes until 10pm. Mainly because I end up falling asleep in her room and that's when the husband wakes me up. :-) Then I go into my office and write for about an hour, until my head starts dropping onto the keyboard.

On weekend I spend the days doing laundry, going to the library, and playing with the kidlet, and taking 15 minute breaks every hour or so. I sneak into my office then and write some more in those tiny little windows. Nights are the same - 10pm until 11pm to write. If the weather is nice and there's no major work to do on the house, the husband will sneak the kidlet to the park for 2 hours and then I've got what seems like an endless stretch to get some writing in. Sad when 2 hours seems like forever, but that's how it is.

I'll admit that on occassion I've spent more time writing at work than working (it's a perk of having my bosses in a different state, and being in I.T. - we're there in case something breaks, and if everything is working we've got nada to do). It depends on the day, though, and thanks to staffing cuts those days are coming a lot less often. Lunch hours are always about writing, though, and on the ocassional breaks I'll take my notebook and jot down ideas for scenes.
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Nathan Bransford
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by Nathan Bransford » September 16th, 2010, 12:22 am

Weekdays I get up at 6:30 and get to work around 7:30 (usually read on the bus). Usually 75-100 e-mails every morning to sift through and I'm hopefully caught up around 10:00. Make calls, follow-ups, blog if I don't have one saved up, etc. etc. I head home around 4:30 (no one is calling after that point as most editors I work with are on NYC time), read on the way home, eat dinner and work at home until about 8 - 9, catch up with the Forums, watch a TV show before bed (thank goodness for DVR), and head to sleep around 10:00-10:30.

Weekends I sleep in a little, get up, if I've caught up with work during the week I'll start writing around 10-11, and write until 6 or 7, then watch some TV or a movie.

Lather rinse repeat.

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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by wildheart » September 16th, 2010, 3:25 pm

I'll be the first to admit I should write more than I do. I don't have a job at the moment...although I will be going to school shortly. Instead I spend my days watching the kidlet. He doesn't sleep like a normal baby. All of it happens at night. So I have to be a little creative to find time to write/edit. Here's my schedule:

8:00am- Drag myself out of bed to feed the child and myself.
8:40- 11:30ish- Play with the kid, clean up a little.
Noonish- Take a shower, get dressed.
1:00pm-8:00pm- More boring stuff.
8:00-9:30pm- Edit my manuscript or work on new WIP.
Next day do the same thing over again.

I shouldn't complain. I get an hour or two more that most to work on my book. But sometimes I wonder if I'll be able to do this when I go to school. I hope so.

I'm going to start asking for time to write on weekends too. I really want to finish my book.

Emily J- I know what you mean. I too knock out manuscripts very quickly. I could easily write two or three books a year without a sweat. But when it comes to editing...I can only focus on one for a year. How do full-time writers edit so quickly? Editing is SO MUCH harder than I ever imagined.
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wildheart
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by wildheart » September 16th, 2010, 3:29 pm

Nathan Bransford wrote:Weekdays I get up at 6:30 and get to work around 7:30 (usually read on the bus). Usually 75-100 e-mails every morning to sift through and I'm hopefully caught up around 10:00. Make calls, follow-ups, blog if I don't have one saved up, etc. etc. I head home around 4:30 (no one is calling after that point as most editors I work with are on NYC time), read on the way home, eat dinner and work at home until about 8 - 9, catch up with the Forums, watch a TV show before bed (thank goodness for DVR), and head to sleep around 10:00-10:30.

Weekends I sleep in a little, get up, if I've caught up with work during the week I'll start writing around 10-11, and write until 6 or 7, then watch some TV or a movie.

Lather rinse repeat.
First of all, I hope you get quality time with your wife in there:D Second...I had no idea you spent so much time writing. You're something else Nathan:) How do you do it all without going crazy? Do you ever take a personal day?
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Nathan Bransford
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by Nathan Bransford » September 16th, 2010, 5:35 pm

wildheart wrote:
Nathan Bransford wrote:Weekdays I get up at 6:30 and get to work around 7:30 (usually read on the bus). Usually 75-100 e-mails every morning to sift through and I'm hopefully caught up around 10:00. Make calls, follow-ups, blog if I don't have one saved up, etc. etc. I head home around 4:30 (no one is calling after that point as most editors I work with are on NYC time), read on the way home, eat dinner and work at home until about 8 - 9, catch up with the Forums, watch a TV show before bed (thank goodness for DVR), and head to sleep around 10:00-10:30.

Weekends I sleep in a little, get up, if I've caught up with work during the week I'll start writing around 10-11, and write until 6 or 7, then watch some TV or a movie.

Lather rinse repeat.
First of all, I hope you get quality time with your wife in there:D Second...I had no idea you spent so much time writing. You're something else Nathan:) How do you do it all without going crazy? Do you ever take a personal day?
Ha- My wife and I call 8:00 pm the witching hour, where we have to stop working and hang out with each other unless we have notified the other in advance and the reason for working late has been approved.

But no, I don't really take days off unless I'm on vacation.

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charlotte49ers
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by charlotte49ers » September 16th, 2010, 6:39 pm

5:45 Wake-up, get dressed, get my son dressed

*insert cute picture of offspring*

Image

6:50 Leave the house, drop son off at day care

7:15 Get to school

7:20 - 3:30 Teach 3rd grade

Usually leave around 4 or 4:15

Pick up little dude and head home

And then in my evenings, I'm either catching up on etsy orders or photography sessions, spending time with the family, cooking dinner, cleaning, having a glass of wine to survive it all, you get the picture…lol

Writing usually gets done (if at all) between 9:30 - 11:00 pm and then it starts all over again the next day. I'm insanely busy (and it's my fault), but really…I don't think I'd change much. I love all of my activities and my family is pretty great, too. ;-)

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Heather B
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Re: What is a typical day like for you?

Post by Heather B » September 17th, 2010, 4:00 am

I work shift work, so my days are rather atypical.

Today, with no work, went as follows:

Wake up whenever.
Sift through forums/blogs/emails/messages on my iPhone while I'm still trying to wake up.
Coffee!
Hang clothes on line and put more washing on.
Drop my dear siblings at school.
Coffee! and start writing (after checking the forums to cringe at my unedited, iPhone posts).
Mum: *barge into my room* "Come shopping?"
Me: "...No"
Mum: "Come on....."
Me: ...*sigh* "Okay."
Shop for two and a half hours (!) then grumble about running into people wasting my time.
Change bed sheets.
Coffee!!!
Finish chapter.
Email betas.
Pick sister up from school. *grumble*
Call boy, convince him to come to the movies.
Write this post.
Get my arse off-line and into the shower.
Movies.
Drinks.
Zzzzzzzzzzz

When I work, it's rare for me to get any writing done unless I'm on night work. That place exists purely to ruin me.
Journey to the Cuckoo's Nest

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