How did you manage the demands of young children and writing? What did your schedule look like? (Did you have child care during the day or did you only write in the evening?)
I have three children, aged eleven, nine and five. When they were babies I gave up writing entirely for the first six months of their lives (ie, there's been a year and a half in the past decade when I haven't written at all.) I thought it would be less stressful to accept that small babies and a meaningful writing life can be pretty incompatible - apart from anything else, you just get so tired you can hardly speak, let alone construct honed sentences at a computer keyboard! I also just wanted to enjoy my children's baby-days rather than spend the first few months of their lives feeling frustrated and anxious that I wasn't producing any work. After they were six months, they all went to nursery for about three mornings a week (approx. 9 - 1) so I was able to get back into some kind of writing routine. This echoed the way I'd always worked before I had children - ie, I used to combine half a day's writing with half a day of paid work. (Of course, I wasn't earning any money now though, so our income nose-dived, as did the tidiness of our house... ) From the age of three, the children went to state-subsidised nursery school, which improved our dwindling resources a little, but not the amount of time I had to write. I rarely write in the evening because I'm not an 'evening person' - I just get too tired. I do try to keep a notebook, but that's very dependent on whether I remember to put it in my bag!
What is your schedule like now that you are published? Is it easier?
Describe your journey as a writer before and after children.
Tell us about your new book and when it's coming out, and if/when you are having a signing!
Thanks so much for your insights, Ruth. Her books are available on Amazon and of course, always ask at your local bookstore. I am reading Things to Make and Mend and really enjoying it.
Tune in on Monday to read about dealing with rejection!