A Day in the Writing/Publishing Life

Several people have asked what my typical day is like. And the appropriate answer is “what’s a typical day?” I wear many hats, work on various projects, and wrestle with countless distractions. So, yesterday I kept a log of my activities from the time I got out of bed to when I went back to bed (i.e., the “work day”).

  • 7:30, get up, coffee and breakfast. While eating breakfast, read and answer the overnight email. (Nine emails since midnight, which was the last time I checked mail: 2 of them about writing projects, including one from my coauthor Doug Beason about revisions to our new high-tech thriller, The Doomsday Cascade; the other 7 are WordFire Press matters, book schedules, author orders, cover questions.)
  • An hour workout in the gym while listening to a writing/publishing podcast. Right now it’s The Creative Penn with Joanna Penn (highly recommended).
  • Write two script pages for Clockwork Lives graphic novel (Insight Editions). Right now I’m working on The Sea Captain’s Tale.

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  • Clean up cat barf (keeping it real).
  • Go out on the trail to dictate two chapters in Tastes Like Chicken, the new Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I. novel in progress, which WordFire Press will publish.
  • Come home for lunch with Rebecca. Check email. Sigh, in the two hours I’ve been out dictating, I received 29 emails: 2 from my coauthors about writing projects, 3 newsletters, and the other 24 emails are about WordFire Press stuff.
  • After dealing with all the email emergencies, write two more pages in Clockwork Lives graphic novel script, which finishes The Sea Captain’s Tale.
  • Business phone call. Repair guy shows up. Brief surprise visit from another author driving by on the way to Denver Comic Con. Another email flurry. Take out pork chops for dinner.   It’s now 3:45.
  • Edit Chapter 61 in Spine of the Dragon (while sitting out on the back porch as afternoon thunderheads gather overhead).

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  • Meet with the gardener who drops by to ask about yard work.
  • Upload four Jody Lynn Nye WFP titles and one KJA title to the BundleRabbit site. (I’m slowly adding WordFire Press books to the site, to make them available for other bundlers and boxed sets.) Not a complicated process, but it takes 5-10 minutes for each title.
  • Ahhh. Enjoy an Elephant Rock IPA as I cook dinner, pork chops and sweet corn on the grill. Then dinner together as we watch an episode of Veep.
  • A last stint of work after dinner, wearing my WFP art director hat. Contact artist to commission two cover paintings, one for the new Dan Shamble novel, another for a cool “Goonies meets Jurassic Park with monsters” adventure we’re publishing this Halloween, Monsterland by Michael Okon.
  • Review orientation materials and set up login credentials for the new online MFA classes I’ll start taking in a couple of weeks…another thing to do, but if I don’t have an MFA I apparently am not qualified to teach creative writing at a college level. Sigh.
  • Then, 8 PM, kick back to watch a couple hours of TV with Rebecca and the cats (standup comedy, an episode of Dr. Who, and another episode of Veep).
  • 10:30, hit the Jacuzzi tub for an hour of reading (or rereading—Slimy Underbelly, the fourth Dan Shamble novel, to stay up to speed while writing Tastes Like Chicken).

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  • Put the cats to bed and put myself to bed, around midnight.