Monday, January 24, 2011

My Average Week

ACK! I have forgotten to blog! In my defense, there is a LOT going on at Chez Harris this week, much of which is book related. It's funny, because I thought being a professional writer was going to entail a lot of, well, WRITING. But I find myself getting sucked into a hole of Other Stuff. I'm not big on procrastination, but I could still work on my to-do list all week and never write a single word in the WIP if I were so inclined. And the sad part is that I'm not even on the shelves yet!

Think you'd like to write for a living? You can expect your weekdays to look something like this:
  • Attempt to squeeze in work on the WIP at some point every day.
  • Emails! An hour a day, every day. Gotta keep up with fans, bloggers, interview requests, fellow writers, and publishing in general.
  • Marketing type stuff. It's impossible to do it all, so you just pick something you do well and go with it. Like I do a lot of blogging (sometimes LATE) and tweeting. I do a few Skype visits, but it's not my biggest thing. And I do something marketing related every day.
  • Interviews! If you choose to do them, expect to take two or three hours to answer those questions. No one wants to read the same answers cut and pasted over and over. It might take only five minutes to read those things, but I guarantee that the author slaved over those answers. This helps to explain why I still have interview requests from November-ish that I haven't answered. Sorry about that!
  • Fun mini projects. I'm starting to gear up for the launch. Yes, six months in advance. Those big events take a lot of planning, you know--and I'm a big event kind of person. So this week, I'll be doing things like renting a school hallway, and creating an audition request for actors, and going to the yarn store, and drafting some web copy. All a part of some fun launch related things I've got lined up, although admittedly the to-do list part isn't particularly fun.
  • Critiques. If you decide to trade manuscripts with someone for feedback, and I really recommend it, you've got to return fire. That means reading, thinking about, and replying to their manuscripts as well as reading, thinking about, and replying to their feedback. It takes a lot of time, but it's worth it!
  • READING! Some writers skip this, but to me it's a part of the job. I read a little every day. Some books I pick up for pleasure, and some are sent to me by people I know. It makes me a better writer, and it helps me remember what I love about writing. Sometimes that feeling can get lost in the neverending to-do list.
  • Take your kids to school and try to figure out what's wrong with the car battery. WAIT. That's just me. And something tells me I ought to get on that right now.

Reading over that list, I'm a little exhausted. I'll admit that. But I still wouldn't trade this profession for any other. I GET PAID FOR MAKING UP STORIES ABOUT ZOMBIES. How cool is that?

Oh, and I get to write off my trip to the roller derby this weekend. SNARF.


A. B. England said...

I'm coming to realize it's a work-from-home thing as much as anything else. No contract for me as of yet, but my week is very similar if you substitute working on the WIP with making products for the store and giving interviews with taking photos and writing descriptions.

In any case, I'll pass the caffiene IV and multivitamins. Good health and good luck.

Unknown said...

And to think, some people think of it as a "hobby". Being a full time writing sounds like more work than an office job.

Matthew MacNish said...

Damn! I'll have to quit my soul sucking day job to handle all that ... oh, wait, that would be awesome. Never mind.

Hanna Banana said...

You got to write off the roller derby? I am so jealous. The best I got lately was going to the yarn shop and sing it for a space analysis paper. The cost of the yarn I bought SO did not qualify as research or at least that is what I was told.

Unknown said...

Wow, and I thought I was busy. You go girl! I am glad you get paid for writing books about zombies. Selfishly, I say this cause I am way excited to read BTIB!