A Day in the Life of a Writer
August 08, 2014
by Yvonne DiVita, blog founder
5:30 a.m. Rise. Slip on flip-flops. Stretch. Yawn. Try not to go through the entire day's work in your brain as you brush your teeth, because you know the day will NOT unfold the way you imagine. Shower or take a bird bath (in the sink... clean up, one way or another).
6:00 Shlep down to the kitchen. Let dogs out. Turn on coffee pot. Emit loud exclamation... @#*& forgot to prepare coffee pot last night! Shlep to sink. Clean coffee grounds from basket. Fill pot with water. Put all back together, with fresh coffee. Click start. Sigh.
6:10 Let dogs in. Try not to trip over cat who has emerged from basement. Give animals morning treats, amid much scurrying about. Remind dogs, "Not today," when they give that 'are we going for a walk now?" look and wiggle. Check calendar... yes, it's only Thursday. Two more days before you have a bit of free time to walk the dogs. Unless...the day unfolds more calmly than yesterday.
6:20 Pour coffee. Ah! Suddenly awake, move to office, wondering on the way why coffee takes so long to brew. Pot probably needs cleaning, again. Really? Didn't you just clean it a month, two months, ago? Oh well. Sit in chair. Open email...or not. Depends. If email is opened, give the most important notes some attention, save others for later, move on to social media. Any responses to content posted yesterday, especially questions asked? No. Silence, except for cute cat pictures or funny sayings. Sigh.
8:45 Make breakfast. More coffee, eggs, fruit. Dogs circle because you are in kitchen and that's the treat room. "No more treats!" you admonish them. Cat has curled up in a sunny spot by the sliding glass doors. You wish you could do that.
10:45 Bathroom break. More coffee. Adjust blinds to sun won't bake the pets. Turn ceiling fan on. Contemplate progress, or lack thereof.
11:00 Move away from actual writing to visit Facebook - finally, answers to the questions. Yay! Click a few links relevant to research on your writing topic. Answer phone, hoping it's your client who is supposed to call in half hour but you'd love to get the call out of the way now. Hang up on telemarketer. Sigh. Return to writing, adding the content from the research you just did. Smile because it's perfect! You are on a roll now! When client calls you rave about the progress. Client laughs, asks a few questions, adds another flavor to what you're doing, hangs up happy.
12:00 Head down, eyes focused, fingers fly over the keyboard. You're going to get 8 pages done today. Normal amount of writing is about 5, on a good day. Today is a terrific day! You might even finish this project tomorrow, which would make the weekend glorious!
2:00 Stand. Stretch. Find lunch...in the refrigerator. Leftover pizza. Not the best, but filling.
You're too anxious to get back to work, since it's going so well today. Drink some water, turn the coffee pot off (should have done that hours ago), trudge to your chair and dial the phone. Just thought of a question for the client; leave voicemail.
3:00 Outlook reminds you there is an hour webinar this afternoon which you signed up for weeks ago and totally forgot about. You notice a series of emails about it and wonder how you missed them. You have half an hour to decide to listen or not... you choose to listen, while you continue working. It's not ideal, but you want to get this done!
4:30 Webinar was good but because you were distracted with your own writing, you did not get to take notes. You make a note of the link to access the webinar later on. But, in your heart, you know you will not. You know you will forget, or get too busy, or just decide you don't need it. Life happens, you remind yourself. You secretly wish you'd taken time to watch a little of it. Sigh.
5:30 Time to step away from the computer. Time to let the dogs out again, third time in two hours. You watch them chase squirrels in the backyard, going over your work, in your head. When they come back in, you make sure they have water, you give them kisses, and go back to your desk. You need to review and edit, and then let the content sit overnight. Tomorrow, you'll start off with a focus on review and editing, again. And, then, you'll finish this!
7:00 Done. Done for now. Before stepping away, joining your husband in the kitchen where he's already started dinner, you click into social media. Just for a few minutes, you tell yourself. And then, suddenly, your husband is calling you to the kitchen table... dinner is ready. "Just a sec," you call back. You have another tweet to send, a Facebook mention to thank, and a quick Pin to Pinterest.
7:20 Your husband comes and drags you away from the computer. "Your dinner is getting cold," he complains at you. You kiss him and thank him and promise that tomorrow you will stop at 6:00. He just nods. He knows you're lying. Well, not lying. Pretending.
Day over. Not really. There is more to any writer's day than this. Many writers start at end of day, after their 'real' job. Some work through the night, in a frenzy, because writing is such a passion, they can't live without it.
How close is this to your day?
I should turn off that webcam -- you are spying on me! Except all cats here--no dogs. Tea instead of coffee. Starting at 9 am because I go to bed at midnight, 1 am-ish.
Very comforting post -- knowing I'm not alone. Thanks, Yv!
Posted by: Mary Anne Shew | August 08, 2014 at 10:53 PM
I really enjoyed your article, Yvonne DiVita. Dedication and determination = SUCCESS! You and Carol are inspirations to so many, and I applaud your passion and perseverance. NOW if I could just get Carol away from the computer, the phone, the iPad, before 2:00 A.M., I would be a HAPPY camper. LOL
Posted by: Darlene | August 08, 2014 at 03:58 PM
Okay do you have a camera here in my house? If Darlene sees those final words about promising what time I am stopping for the day, she might hold me to it. This is so spot on and I am sharing. Bird bath cracked me up hahahah I do bird baths!
Posted by: Carol Bryant | August 08, 2014 at 03:42 PM