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Friday, May 18, 2012

5am and Other Changes

It's Friday morning, not even 10:30 yet, and I want a nap. I long to crawl into bed, pull the blankets over my head, and sleep for twelve hours straight.

This week I started a crazy regime that involves getting up at 5am. Why? Math.

I sat down and calculated how many words I needed to write to hit all my project goals this year. My rough estimate is 180,000 words written. That doesn't account for editing, revising, polishing, query letters, synopsises, or anything else that goes into writing.

180,000 words isn't much. It's only 100 words a day for half a year. Assuming I have 260 days a year to write in (because weekend are out), I could easily make the written goal, but only if I could find time to write every day. And not 200-300 words like I'd been managing.

I'm not a cheerful morning person, but I find it nearly impossible to write at night. After a long day I simply don't have the energy to focus on a book at 10pm.

This week I ran an experiment. I set three goals for the day and woke up at 5am so I could write before my older girls get up at 6am for school. Average daily word count: a little over 1000 words/day.

This means an earlier bedtime, less time on Twitter, less time cruising the internet, and less late night chats with friends on the phone or gtalk. I finished a 13k short story this week and started working on EVERY HERO NEEDS A VILLAIN again. That makes the early mornings worth the effort.

That's where I'm at. The free e-book for the Midsummer Blog Hop is being edited, JANE DOE is still with the critters, EHNAV is in the rough draft form and about half done.

What are you working on right now?


  1. I had a regime of getting up at 5am - hubs leaves for work then - and it gave me a good hour/hour and a half of silent house to free-write. But I've been too tired for that just lately, and the recent book tour was exhausting. I tried going to bed early last night in the hope of getting my routine back, but slept right through to the alarm at 7am!
    Now I have edits back on the messy sequel and still tweaks to do on a YA scifi so I can sub it. Those are my goals for the next fortnight before my kids have a week's school holiday which will mean no writing at all. So I guess I'd better get back to it!

    1. DH is usually up at 4 or 4:30 and out the door by 5:30. He's slept in until 6 or 7 every day this week. It makes me want to kick him on my way to writing. :P

      School holidays... I'm not looking forward to those. We'll have a schedule and the kids will be doing summer school projects so I'll still be getting up at 5 or 6.

  2. Super MOM! Liana, you inspire me. I going to try a new writing schedule now.

    1. I'm going to give it another week or two before I recommend this schedule to anyone. Let's see if I die first before we all jump on the crazy train.

      If I could get in bed at nine or grab a midday nap, I'd be golden, but it's not happening.

  3. Yeah, I'm not a morning person either. For now I can afford to be that way. But I'll probably have to follow your example when I eventually move to working full-time. *bows to your awesomeness*

  4. Me and mornings...when we broke up, we weren't able to stay friends. Still, what you describe here is inspirational. My wife always encourages me to get up wicked early to write at the beginning of the day, and I insist upon doing it at the end of the day...although, frequently, I end up too tired to focus. Perhaps I should give this idea a shot...right after I invent a way to deliver coffee intravenously. Which, come to think of it, is a nifty science-fiction concept in it's own right.

    1. *chuckles* Can't deliver coffee intravenously but a coffee machine right beside your work space does the trick.

      I'm not a coffee person but my husband is. Surprisingly, I make a better cup of coffee than he does.