Establishing a Routine

It's not unusual that during the course of a conversation I'll be having with someone I haven't met before, when the subject of my writing comes up, almost without fail the person will express their desire to write a book themselves. If they only had the time.

Their excuses for not doing so range from having to watch their kids, to wanting to spend time with their spouses. There's housework that needs to be done, laundry waiting to be washed, work around the house that they've been putting off far to long. And the biggest excuses is being too tired after a hard day at work.

Not to brag but I'm writing this on Sunday evening after having worked from 9am until 5pm in a retail store. I got up this morning at 5:30 am, showered and made some coffee, then sat down and wrote until it was time to get ready for work. After work I stopped at another store to pick up food for the dogs and upon arriving home I sat down to dinner with my wife and our oldest grandson who had stopped by for a visit.

After dinner I ran my grandson home, came back to the house and helped finish the dishes. Now I sit at my computer, a cold beer on my desk beside me, while I write this post I've been promising myself I would do all week. You see I've made the decision that I have to post three times a week from this point on. Mondays will be missives like you're reading now about living the life of a writer who also works a full time job. Wednesdays will be devoted to new discoveries I've made in horror fiction, guest posts from other authors, and interviews. Fridays will remain Fridays Frights with a more personal touch as I talk about creepy places around the world. After I'm done this post I'll join my wife on the patio while we watch our dogs play in the back yard and relax for an hour or so before we go off to bed.

Recently I've rediscovered an old truth about being a working writer. To be successful, to complete your projects in a timely manner, you have to have a routine. Setting a goal is not enough if you don't establish a routine that will help you achieve that goal. My shot term goal is to finish Parasite, part two of the Shadows of the Past series I've been contemplating for some time. I want to release it by Halloween this year. To do that I have to finish it by the end of August. That will give me all of September and most of October to rewrite and polish the story in preparation for its Halloween release.

Will I make it?

I'm doing everything possible on my end. For the past two weeks I've gotten up every morning at 5:30, hopped in the shower, and grabbed some coffee before turning on the computer and getting to work. I've established a routine that is slowly becoming second nature.When I wrote Shadows of the Past I did the same thing, starting work the same time each day,and working until I achieved a goal which at the time was five pages per day, many days I'd write ten or fifteen. and in no time I had written 85,000 words.

To date I've laid down just over 25,000 words on Parasite. I'm nearly halfway there.

There's another little truth I've rediscovered recently. By sticking to my routine I've found I actually have more time to do the things I want to without feeling guilty.

Oh and don't forget while you're here to sign up for my monthly giveaway. This month I'm giving away a $10.00 amazon gift card along with an electronic library of all of my work. The drawing will take place August 15. to sign up follow the Where's Puddles link above.

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