Thought I’d share with you a typical, or rather not so typical writing day with you.
Friday 8.30am. Normally this is when I start home-schooling my daughter, but today she is feeling ill so I decide to work on a submission instead. Normally my writing time is late afternoon/early evening so this is a bit of change for me.
I settle my daughter down on the sofa with CBBC (for those of you who don’t live in the UK this is an advertisement free childrens’ channel) and I get down to work.
10.30am first draft done I check for typos and grammar then go for a coffee and to get my girl a drink and snack.
Mull over the piece I’ve written; it’s missing something. Half-an hour later I’ve figured out what needs to be done and it’s back to the laptop. One hour later, 2nd draft is done. It reads better but is by no means perfect. On checking the word count I’ve written 2000 words and that’s a problem as the magazine I’m submitting too only want 1,700 max. Time to get editing. This isn’t actually too much of a problem as I usually just remove the first three or four paragraphs and find that the piece works just as well from this point on. The reason? Well, I suspect like many of you when I start to write a piece my brain is still warming up to the material and getting into writing mode; even with my outline in front of me my brain still takes at least three or four paragraphs to get warmed up. Whilst many of these are fine paragraphs they are usually on reflection surplus to requirements. So out with the carefully constructed opener, this was a hard decision as it was very good and I spent a while writing it. Then out with the following three paragraphs and suddenly the piece is a lot tighter, sharper and nearer the 1,700 words mark.
A quick break to make lunch and then it’s time to print it out and read through again, line by line, picking up typos the laptop didn’t, such as it instead of is, and removing unnecessary words.
At 12.30pm I’m down to 1690 words. Perfect! A final check through and off it goes. Job done!
What is your writing day like? Let us know in the forum.