Life has changed since having my son almost three years ago. Having a lay-in means sleeping past 8am. Rewind to his new-born days and 8am was the stuff that dreams were made of…You all know the term ‘there are never enough hours in the day’ well it’s never been truer for me. I don’t have a typical day. I am a working mum, with three cats, a dog, and two bunnies (did I mention that I love animals?) I used to be a corporate rat, uninspired and jumping on and off London busses and tubes. I guess the good thing about my commute was having the opportunity to read lots of books, and visualising the day that I would actually write and publish one.
When my son was born in October 2012, I ditched my London life and focused on being a mum. It was during this time that I really started to think about my future. If I was going to one day tell my little boy that he could be anything that he wanted to be, then I knew I had to lead by example. Having my son gave me every reason to try harder. I wrote my first novel around being a mum and working my day job. I was beyond tired, but it was all worth it.
There were many twists and turns in the road, and I’ll save that for another post, but I eventually got the book contract that I had been waiting for. Here I am in June 2016 with a little boy, a house full of four-legged furs, married to my best friend, juggling my part-time hospital job with my author life. I don’t sleep much. I guess you can understand why…
Let’s talk about the day-job. I work as a Ward Managers Assistant in a Trauma & Orthopaedics Ward. I start at 8am and finish around 6pm, usually without a break—I do this three days a week. The days are long in hours, but I am so busy, it never feels long. Being a mum is the most demanding job, I am in the terrible two zone. On the two days I’m home with my little boy, I can be reading books, drawing dinosaurs (which I am awful at.) I may even be watching Peppa Pig, or trekking the woods with my little sidekick and my gorgeous German Shepherd.
My writing life is very full on. I never actually switch off. Thankfully, I have a very supportive husband who understands my level of crazy when I am in the thick of a novel. I don’t follow a set routine when writing. I do like writing directly on a PC or laptop, I used to write longhand, but it was all too time consuming and the truth is that it is far easier for me to develop a story by writing on a computer.
When getting down to write, I select a song that I think fits to the theme of my story on YouTube and then I let it play through, randomly. Some of my best writing has been created when I have let music guide me.
Saturday however is a little more structured. This is the day when I pamper myself. I start the morning off by going for a walk with my husband, son, and dog, or I lock myself away and write. Saturday afternoons are for my weekly blow-dry. I am hair obsessed, and I love nothing better than having somebody else washing and making my hair look fabulous. Because when you feel good, you feel like you can take on the world!