THE LIFE OF AN AUTHOR WITH A FULL-TIME JOB + A THREE-YEAR-OLD

Writing a book is hard work. Writing a book while working and parenting full-time is even harder.

Here’s a little glimpse at how most of my (work) days go.

5AM — Open my eyes (usually on my own… no alarm necessary) and try to wake up. Get out of bed, pour myself some warm water with lemon, and settle down in the dark family room to write.

5:45-6:15AM — Some time during this time, my three year old wakes up. Since my husband has already left for work, I’m on my own with getting him breakfast, changed and off to daycare.

8:15AM — Back from daycare drop-off and my work day begins. I work from home and usually eat lunch at my desk. Sometimes, if I need a break, I will take my laptop into the backyard and write for a few minutes.

4:15PM — My husband picks up our son from daycare and they immediately head out into the backyard to play while I try to write.

5:30PM — I start on dinner and we all eat together. After dinner we spend time playing.

7:00PM — Our son goes into the bath. Usually my husband does this while I tidy up downstairs. Maybe once a week, I head off to a coffee shop to get some writing done, though this hasn’t been happening as of late…

7:45PM — I watch an episode of Handy Manny on the iPad with my son in his bed and then it’s lights out.

8:00PM — If the hubby is up for it, we watch an episode of whatever TV show we’re binge watching at the time. If he’s out, or not interested, I will start writing.

9:00PM — If I’m not too tired, I try to write.

9:30 – 10:00PM — I am not a night owl, so usually by now I’m asleep, hoping for more time tomorrow to write.

And there you have it: the life of an author with a full-time job and a three-year-old.

TELL ME: WHAT DOES YOUR DAY LOOK LIKE?

25 BOOKISH FACTS ABOUT ME

I’m kind of a sucker for these kinds of posts; where you get a little glimpse into other readers and/or writers. I’m actually surprised that it took me this many years of blogging to finally write one of my own. But, better late than never, right?

Here are a few bookish things about me:

  1. I read more physical books than ebooks, simply because I much prefer the feel of a real book in my hands. 
  2. If I’m not writing first thing, I get most of my reading in in the half hour I get up before my son.
  3. The smell of library books is one of my favorite things.
  4. I am rarely found reading without a cup of coffee nearby.
  5. I find it impossible to narrow down my choices to a few favorite books. So I don’t.
  6. I definitely judge books by their covers.
  7. You will never see me dog-ear the pages of a book I own or borrowed from someone else (but apparently this doesn’t include library books…).
  8. I think that my weakness for romance novels stems back to never seeing my mother without a Harlequin romance in her hand as I grew up.
  9. The last book I read was “An Unforgivable Love Story” by B.L. Berry
  10. I am capable of suffering from terrible book hangovers.
  11. Receiving books as gifts is the best. thing. ever.
  12. I try to write reviews right after I finish a book so that I don’t forget what I want to say about it. And trust me, I will forget if I don’t do it right away.
  13. I can’t read hardcover books with the dust jacket on. It drives me nuts.
  14. My favorite genres are probably contemporary romance and literary fiction.
  15. If a book keeps coming across my radar (ie, everyone I follow online is blabbing on about it), I’m more than likely going to give in and read it. Case in point: The Love that Split the World.
  16. I’ve written and published three novellas, and am currently working on what will hopefully be my first published novel. 
  17. I pretty much always carry a book with me. You never know when you’ll be stuck waiting somewhere.
  18. Books are my favorite type of home decor.
  19. Bookstores are where I go when I need time to myself.
  20. I organize the books on my shelves by their spine colors.
  21. I share most — if not all — of what I read on Instagram, using #rachelreadsthis
  22. I’m obsessed with bookish photography (hello crimebythebook and sweptawaybybooks)
  23. I get genuinely excited when someone asks me for book recommendations.
  24. I am not a fan of audio books. at. all.
  25. I go through phases with my favorite authors, but currently I’m majorly crushing on Meg Wolitzer and Emily Henry.

I’M NOT GOING TO CALL IT WRITER’S BLOCK

I’ve gone through periods before where I’m stuck and can’t seem to get anything written down. But this… this feels awfully different. Too different. Fresh off the heels of writing and publishing Losing Lily, I dove right into writing BEING LEAH, and to say that it has been an epic struggle would be an understatement.

Obviously, I know how this book is going to go:

Boy and Girl met in previous book; went through some stuff, but found a way to be together. Here is where their real story begins. Only it’s not that simple. The past doesn’t want to stay in the past. But in the end, love wins, because, hello… everyone wants a HEA (happily ever after). I could choose not to write it that way, but really… I just can’t bring myself to. I love these characters. Even I am rooting for them.

This book has been coming along so slowly that I — the pantser — actually sat down for an afternoon and laid everything out, plotting my way around this and that. And now I have a plan.

I thought for sure that this would be the answer to my problems. But no.

Still nothing.

I’m not going to call it writer’s block, because that feels like I’m letting it win. What I’m going to do is sit down tonight and dig in to it. I mean really dig in to it. And over the course of this week I’m going to see if I can give it the attention it deserves… if I can give it wings to fly… if it has legs…

You get the picture.

Please send all the coffee.

The Book List | #3

Here’s what I read in March:

THE LOVE THAT SPLIT THE WORLD by Emily Henry
I really did enjoy this book, and that’s saying a lot, because usually I avoid the YA genre, finding it — more often than not — too juvenile for me (and I don’t mean that it’s juvenile as in bad. I just mean… not age appropriate for me). But I can honestly say that I’ve never read anything like TLTSTW before. I recall, about 10% of the way through it, turning to my husband and saying “mark my words: this will be a movie.”

THE INTERESTINGS by Meg Wolitzer
This is my second Wolitzer book, and just like the first, I was absolutely in awe of her words. She has truly become one of my new favorite authors.

THROUGH HER EYES by Ava Harrison
I was surprised by this book. I wasn’t sure that I was going to like it, but I did. It’s romantic and very mushy at times, but that’s exactly what I was in the mood for. If you’re in to supporting indie authors, give this book a shot.

What books have you read lately? What should I read next?