Diary of a freelance writer: 16 November 2016

I seem to be getting the hang of this working and ticking things off lark. I can only put this current surge down to NaNoWriMo and the discipline it’s giving me. I’m writing on usual days off, and I’m forcing myself to write my day’s quota at the end of the day if I haven’t already done it. This is all good, and long may it continue.

This morning I spent a few minutes updating my diary for the next few weeks, as I have plenty of work in to fill the “client” slots. I’ve filled in the “NaNoWriMo” slots to the end of the month, and replaced them with “writing work” from 1 December. I also have a slot in on 1 December for “new month admin”. Three times a week from 1 December I have “study work”, and twice a week I have “job-search work” – I do like to keep on top of this because you never know when a client might suddenly pull the rug out from beneath your feet.

The biggest thing I changed, for me, is “daily competitions” to “housework” and “weekly clicks-to-win” have simply been removed, with the usual week’s admin chores re-jigged slightly. Yes, yes, yes, I know I removed the “housework” sections before. But it still has to be done and if I don’t allocate time to it, it creeps into my work time. So, as I’ve not won anything for a while, and as I’ve never won a thing on the clicks-to-win, housework has been moved back to those daily slots, and the admin has been spread out a little more evenly.

Wednesday 9 November 2016
Wednesday was day 9 of NaNoWriMo. Have you been watching my little Writertopia man? Did you keep an eye on the word-count meters at all? I wrote 1,737 words for NaNo, I wrote 493 words for a blog post, and I added 818 words to Diary of a Scaredy Cat. I didn’t do any editing because the book I was waiting for hadn’t arrived yet. This is why I was able to spend extra time on Scaredy Cat.

Thursday 10 November 2016
On Thursday, I wrote 1,061 words for NaNoWriMo before the second power-cut of the week. We’d already had a massive power-cut on Tuesday evening, so this second one wasn’t such a surprise. When the lights started to flicker, however, I finished what I was doing, backed everything up and switched off.

I did a short proofreading job, and at teatime, after a quick omelette for an early tea, we went and did the weekly shopping. When we got back, we discovered that the third power-cut of the week had indeed occurred. We’d timed it perfectly.

Friday 11 November 2016
On Friday, I wrote 746 words for a blog post, and I wrote 1,686 words for NaNoWriMo. The job I was expecting to start on Wednesday still hadn’t arrived. So I read for a few hours today. I think I deserved that with all of the NaNoWriMo work I’ve been doing.

Long weekend
On Saturday, before anything else, I wrote 1,671 words for NaNoWriMo. In the afternoon we went to Leeds for the Christmas market and got there just in time for the lights to look nice in the darkness. We had about an hour-and-a-half there.

On Sunday, we drove down to Birmingham to accompany my dad for a minor medical procedure, as he needed someone to be on hand for the next 24 hours. We had a busy day, but when he went to bed early, I hauled out my notebook computer and I wrote 1,700 words for NaNoWriMo.

On Monday, we came home. We did some shopping for Dad and went to visit Mom as he didn’t feel able and, anyway, we were there and we wanted to see her. Then we came home via Doncaster and a quick visit to the mother-in-law. When we got back I got my notebook computer out again but the battery was almost flat. So I had to put it on charge. My work was on a memory stick, but if I’m working on days off or during the evening, I like to work on the notebook on my lap in the lounge. So once there was enough charge, I wrote 1,703 words for NaNoWriMo and felt very pleased with myself. *smug grin*

The work I expected last week finally arrived, but it was too late for me to do anything with by the time we got home.

Tuesday 15 November 2016
Yesterday was pretty much when I decided not to do the daily competitions anymore, or the weekly clicks-to-win. I was partway through them when I just thought, sod it!, and stopped. I then went on to write 1,737 words for NaNoWriMo, and I started a small editing job that came in ahead of the one that was expected last week – they don’t want it back for a fortnight, so as they were late coming in, I’m sneaking in a shorty in between.

Homework w/c 16 November 2016
It’s still NaNoWriMo until 30 November, so that’s pretty much what I’ll be doing every day. We may go to the York Christmas market on Saturday, and we may fit in either a gig or the pictures. But apart from that, the weekend is clear. (Hurrah!)

  • Client-wise, I have this shorty job to complete today, the late one to do as soon as I get around to it, and then another book to start after that one.
  • Writing-wise, I have the 2nd draft of a short story I’d like to complete, but it’s a long one.
  • Book-wise, I’d like to add a few more words to Diary of a Scaredy Cat.

What are you up to this week? How does your diary look? Could yours benefit from any slight re-jigging too? With a new year looming, it might be worth thinking about this now.

Diary of a freelance writer: 13 July 2016

This week’s post is a little late today, due to a bit of a shock email I received this morning. It took me most of the day to recover! But at least it’s still Wednesday, and it’s still been a very good week.

Wednesday 6 July 2016
Wednesday morning was spent, as usual, on the usual daily chores. I also wrote 824 words for a blog post.

In the afternoon I joined a writers’ critique forum. I’m missing impartial, constructive feedback on my work and have just about given up all hope of finding a real-time face-to-face writers’ group. So I asked around for an online forum, and this one was recommended to another friend of mine who was whingeing about how most writers’ forums are a bit cliquey and back-slappy. This one doesn’t look at all like that … yet.

I wrote 1,062 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW, and I did some basic joining admin for the critique forum as well as my first critique. I wrote 588 words for that. Each critique of around that length earns me one “credit”. I need three “credits” to upload one of my own stories for criticism, but they give you 2 to say welcome as well. So I’d already “earned” my first crit back, but I didn’t use it yet.

Thursday 7 July 2016
On Thursday morning, gig list admin and diary work were added to the morning chores, then the afternoon writing session started with 321 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW.

I tried to format MARDI GRAS on Scrivener, but it didn’t want to play today and I gave up in the end. Then I backed up both the latest Scrivener and Word files of CATCH THE RAINBOW to memory stick. I need to try and do this at the end of each session in future. That way I’ll always have it to work on if anything happens to the desktop or I lose the files on the desktop.

Friday 8 July 2016
On Friday morning I wrote 346 words for a blog post after all of the morning chores. In the afternoon I wrote 725 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW and I joined a history forum. Every time I Google something for CATCH THE RAINBOW, there’s a link to this forum. So I joined it and hope to use it more often.

A new word-counter made it onto the sidebar, so everyone can see how CATCH THE RAINBOW is doing this time.

At the weekend, we had a slightly more local gig for Monkey Dust, and we went out on Sunday (after a very late start due to quite a late night).

Monday 11 July 2016
The first thing I did Monday morning was a 30-minute yoga session. I’d like to build this in at least 3 times a week, but I need to build up slowly. I may fit in another tomorrow morning (Thursday), but so long as it’s there once a week for now, that will be fine.

The morning’s chores included a quick visit to the new critique forum, and I wrote 730 words for a blog post. The rest of the day consisted of housework – lots and lots and LOTS of washing.

Tuesday 12 July 2016
After the previous day’s mammoth laundry session, I didn’t do a speck of housework today. Instead I pitched for 4 editing jobs and wrote a 533-word crit for the forum in the morning.

In the afternoon, I formatted my first story to go up on the forum and I wrote 607 words for CATCH THE RAINBOW.

Homework w/c 13 July 2016
Once I get confirmation of this morning’s shocking, but very pleasant, news, I’ll know how my week will pan out. If nothing is confirmed just yet, then it will be more of the same.

I have a book I need to edit and format and get into production, and I have other books that need to be converted to ebook format. So aside from any writing, I’ll be very busy doing that.

I’m also in the middle of an editing job for a client and, of course, I’ll be interacting with the forum and seeing how many replies I get.

What are you up to this week?