Sunday, May 7, 2017

A Day In The Life by Anita Davison

I have always been in awe of those authors who gave interviews for magazines, blogs and on the radio, look after four children under ten, hold down a part time job, participate in the PTA, Muck out feed and exercise three horses every day, chair five charity committees and yet still find time to write a bestselling novel a year.

Reconciled to being totally unable to compete with these superwomen, I wrote a post to explain why I had named my blog The Disorganised Author. I have reproduced it here, with suitable amendments now I write full time.

7.30am - Stagger out of bed when I hear my better half making coffee downstairs.
7.35am - Climb into shower-grab the shampoo bottle and finding it empty, hurl it in the general direction of the bin. It hits the floor and rolls behind the loo.
7.50am - Slap on some moisturiser and drag on a pair of jeans and a jumper.
8.00am - Pour a coffee, wave goodbye to husband who is out for the day and go back upstairs to the home office.
8.05am - Turn on computer, promise myself to spend no more than half an hour checking e-mails,  FB etc. Get immediately sidetracked by a notice saying my book has been reviewed on Amazon so have to go and take a look - which proves not to be an exercise in masochism    at all so I preen a little.
8.35am - Open up wip - scan yesterday's chapter which doesn't read as well as it did last night, so set about tweaking the dialogue. Move two paragraphs round for clarity. Then move them back again because they made better sense the first time.
10.00am - Make more coffee.
10.10am -  Complete admin on critique group and work on two new critiques that came in from the US when I was sleeping.
11.00am - Post critiques and send off chatty e-mails thanking my critique partners.
11.05am - Mobile rings and have to go into bedroom to answer it - husband reminding me I promised to proofread a report for him for a project he has in mind.
11.10am - Almost trip over laundry bin on way out - see it's overflowing and have an attack of conscience - do some organising and take a pile to the utility room.
11.25am - I cannot read the programme buttons on the washing machine so go back upstairs  to fetch my glasses.
11.30am - Back downstairs again, turn on machine then realise I have left my memory stick in the pocket of my jeans. Turn the machine off again.
11.33am - Wait three minutes until I can open the door, remove memory stick which got caught up in the shirts and turn machine back on. Go back upstairs.
11.45am - Walk down three flights of stairs to answer door to postman who could have got that book through the letter box but decided to knock instead rather than ruin it.
11.50am - Unwrap book and place it on my 'to be reviewed pile' The nice thing about being a writer is publishers send you free books.
12.00pm - Do three chapters of edits, then make myself stop in case I get word blind and miss some as I am rubbish at editing my own work.
1.00pm - Throw a bagel into the toaster, spread it with cream cheese and blackcurrant jam – main  course and dessert all in one - Make another coffee and go back upstairs.
1.15pm - E-mail from publisher pop ups asking if I have remembered to compile series text for their promotion - reply saying yes of course it's on it's way.
1.20pm - Compile some series text for publisher's promotion - takes longer than writing a whole  chapter from scratch!
2.00pm - Open FB and and see what the writing world is doing. Watch a cute puppy video and admire a friends new baby photos.
2.30pm - Back to wip – find a chapter which does nothing for the pace or story line and make myself delete it – despite the scintillating, witty conversation and deep insights into Edwardian life.
3.00pm - Work on plot device as to how someone can commit a murder on a train in a closed compartment without being seen entering or leaving.
5.00pm - Look up from screen and find the room is dark. Power cut? No, the light switch works.
6.00pm -  Jump out of my skin when husband walks in - I didn’t even hear the front door go.

Him: Foul weather with all that rain this afternoon wasn't it?
Me: [Blinks] Weather?
Him: Shame you didn't make it for coffee. Everyone was there, even Joe with his beagle who was sorry he missed you Yes, he means the dog missed me.
Me: Sorry, got caught up with a chapter. Completely forgot we had arranged to meet at our  local hangout where the semi-retired crowd congregate to put the world to rights. A habit we swore we would never get into but quite like. 
Him: You've been busy. Did you read that report?
Me: OMG the report!  Errr… not far off now. It wasn’t urgent was it?
Him: Not really, but I could do with it for tomorrow.
Me: Phew! reprieve. Now where was the darned thing - I knew I had it in the laundry room.
Him: Calls up the stairs - Has the washing machine finished this cycle?
Me: If the light's off, it must have - Yeah, about three hours ago
Him: Pops his head round the door. I’ll put them in the dryer then. BTW I found this on the draining board. Hands me the memory stick. What would you like to eat?

OK, so he cooks! He likes to cook, he says it’s therapy after having to think all day - and as he plans the menus, it makes sense he does the shopping too.

6.15pm -   Complete the report while dinner is cooking.
7.00pm -   Eat dinner, load dishwasher.
8.00pm -   Open laptop and do research for a couple of hours.
11.00pm -  Look up when husband says. I'm going to bed, your laptop’s giving me tinnitus.


  1. Your day sounds so close to mine it's scary. We really are birthday twins.

  2. Your day sounds so close to mine it's scary. We really are birthday twins.

  3. I read your earlier version of this and laughed, which I did this time around, too. Great post. Loved every word.