Kate Hardy :: Day in the Life
Last time I wrote a ‘day in the life’ piece, it earned me the nickname ‘Scary Kate’ from fellow author Kate Walker! In my defence, I’ll quote Paddington Bear: Life is like a marmalade sandwich, and you only get out of it what you put in.
I’m usually up early and sneak in a bit of work before I have to get the kids up for school, then do the usual mummy things (breakfast, packed lunches, nag about teeth/giving in homework/remembering PE kit/remembering violin) and then it’s the school run.
Between then and the afternoon school run I work. (Except Monday mornings when it’s my piano lesson and Tuesday mornings when it’s my guitar lesson. And my monthly date with a tall handsome stranger – ok, my dad – and occasional lunch with friends because they nag me to get work-life balance.)
Work can be all sorts of things, depending on which deadline is most pressing (I write 6 romances a year and 2 history books) and what stage the book is at. So it could be:
· research: that’s anything from 18th-century newspapers in the local archives through to details in medical textbooks or
drooling over hero pics finding visual inspiration on the internet or talking the local fire service into showing me round or going off on tangents on the internet. (I love research. If my husband agrees to take the kids shopping and meet me two hours later to give me archive time near a deadline, they have to come and fish me out because I lose track of time.)
· writing an outline (I’m a planner rather than a pantster, and I need to know everything that happens before I can start work… it does change when I start writing and the characters take over, but I need that roadmap first)
· writing the actual book (I love beginnings)
· talking to my editor about revisions
· checking a set of proofs
· doing an interview with the local paper or a magazine or radio (the kids loved the last photoshoot as it was in the dungeons at
After school means quality time with the children, more nagging (homework); then when my husband’s home from work he takes over, I cook dinner, and then I’m back working until 9pm, when it’s my time with him.
Not so scary… is it? I just think I’m lucky because I do what I love and love what I do.