The alarm rings at 6Am, but normally I have been awake several minutes before then, thinking about my latest work in progress. I shuffle downstairs, put the kettle on, feed the cats –Penny and Tuppence and start up the computer. While I am waiting for the computer to start, I do my exercises. It is a good use of dead time.
Once the computer is booted up, I check my email and answer any pressing queries, then I work on the manuscript – hopefully getting in a good hour before the rest of the house wakes. If I have any critiquing to do, it is when I do it. My youngest always comes down first. When he gets up the ducks and hens, as well as seeing to the dogs that is my signal to do the Mother stuff – make the breakfast, make the lunches, ensure all will go smoothly off to school.
After the school run, I settle down for several hours of writing. Depending on when my deadline is, my writing goal varies but as a general rule of thumb I like to write between 1,500 and 3,000 words per day in addition to any editing that I am doing. I tend to take breaks to clean the house. As I hate doing housework, this ensures that I go back to my work as quickly as possible. I also generally have a cup of tea by the side of my computer.
At some point during the day, I will do a bit of gardening. The garden is about an acre with a stream running through it. It is mostly laid to terraces with a greenhouse and vegetable garden as well. There is always something to be done in the garden from cleaning the henhouse to inspecting the beehives or simply just pulling nettles and ground elder. Working in the garden helps to clear my mind.
Around four the children arrive back home and serious work has to stop unless I am in the last phases of a book. Luckily my husband enjoys doing the grocery shopping and so he does that. He also generally cooks the evening meal as it helps to relax him. As I enjoy cooking as well, the tussles are far likely to be over – who gets the chance to cook! The dogs have to walked and homework vaguely supervised. The house is generally a chaotic hive of industry.
In the evenings after the washing up, I tend to read or do needlework. Or there might be meetings to go as I am on the Board of Governors for my youngest’s school as well as active in my church. If it is light out, we might do a bit more gardening. The ducks and hens go to bed when it starts getting dark. Every night, I have the chore of herding the ducks into bed. Ducks tend to be late night party animals but with the help of the dogs, we get there.
Before I go to sleep, I try to think about my work in progress so that I can wake up with fresh ideas.
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