A how to guest post about meeting deadlines, keeping your family happy and you sane.
One question I get asked a lot is: “How do you find the time to write so much?” The answer is – I don’t. I said I would write a how to post on meeting deadlines, keeping the family happy and keeping myself sane. But the truth is that when I’m writing and there is a deadline looming, the ball gets dropped. The housework is abandoned, the children live on whatever is in the cupboards or the husband is willing to cook, and my sanity… well I didn’t have much of that in the first place.
When I know I have a deadline looming, whether it’s for an edit or a final manuscript, or even because I’m entering a competition, I try not to get too stressed. The worst thing a writer can do is put unnecessary pressure on themselves, because that’s when writer’s block happens. (Yes, it is a real thing.) It’s important to take some time out and remember that even though you’re self-employed and your boss is a bitch (or at least I am), that you still deserve a day off. I always put one or two days aside and tell myself that on those days I am not to open any word document. I try to make it the weekends, when the kids are off school, so that I can spend some quality time with them. It doesn’t always work – it depends on how far away the deadline is.
Don’t forget Me-Time as well. Whether it’s a relaxing bath, a shopping trip, or just taking a long walk, you need to get away from the laptop and give yourself the opportunity to clear your mind. I go to the gym twice a week and take the dog for walks, getting me out of the house, away from technology, and giving me time to breathe.
I’m lucky in the sense that I have a very understanding and supportive husband. He will keep me supplied with endless cups of tea, biscuits and red pens. But still, I have to be organised. My kids are busy bees with lots of after school clubs, and there is my day job as well. I try to keep my writing and editing to the evening – especially considering what I write so that they don’t accidentally read anything they shouldn’t.
One tip I can give is to move the deadline forward. If a deadline is on the 7th of June say, I tell myself it’s on the 1st, giving myself an extra week if I go over my initial date. I try to relax just before my deadline and then use the last two or three days to go over my edits.
My final piece of advice would be, never be afraid to ask for help. Find a friend who will give you honest critiques and advice – it helps with having to make those horrible cuts. It’s a good idea to make friends with your publisher and editor as well, so if you have a problem that means you may miss the deadline, they may be slightly more lenient!
I died for a short while the first time we met. There was no fluttering in my chest, no somersault of my stomach, no burning in my loins; my heart literally stopped. He was tall, at least six foot four, and dressed in a pair of worn indigo jeans that perfectly matched his intense stare. A silk black shirt covered what I imagined to be a ripple of hard muscle, and opened at the top showing a dusting of tight dark curls. His thick neck led towards a razor-sharp, square jaw line, a straight nose that had clearly never seen the ill-effects of rough play, and deep hooded eyes. His hair had been styled with a slight wave. I was sure it was dark brown, but it could have easily been black, and had shots of silver-grey streaking through it.
My face was lined up with his toes, or more precisely, his pristinely polished black patent Chukka boots. Palms down in the thick mud beneath me, I pushed up and sneaked a glance at the man in front of me. He looked none-too-pleased to see his clothes spattered with flecks of dirt from where I had landed and splashed him.
Blurb & Buy Links:
Paige Holmes hides herself in a masculine world in a desperate attempt to remain safe.
Just as she is ready to face her fears and her past, she finds herself torn between Matt Jackson and Vance Ellery: handsome, rich, and safe – or handsome, rich, and dangerous?
Which will she choose?
The one who appears to be the most perfect, or the one who makes her use all Seven Dirty Words?
Tirgearr Publishing: http://tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Howard_Charlotte/seven-dirty-words.htm
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1ExJtUx
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1dy702q
Bio & Social Media Links:
My career as a writer started when I was young, writing poetry and flash fiction for my friends and family. After a few minor successes of having pieces published in anthologies, and later on-line, I decided to have a go at writing a full-length novel. My first attempt was a bit of a disaster, but after years of practice, I finally got that coveted First Contract. Since then, I’ve written several more novels and short stories, and I don’t intend to retire for at least another 50 years.
Charlotte lives in Somerset with her husband, two children, and growing menagerie of pets and can always be found with a cup of tea in her hand. When she’s not writing or running around after small people and animals, she loves to eat curry and watch action films.
Charlotte is an active (and vocal) member of the Yeovil Creative Writers.
Make sure to follow the whole tour—the more posts you visit throughout, the more chances you’ll get to enter the giveaway. The tour dates are here: http://www.writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/charlotte-howard-3/