My Daily Routine: Cat Johnson
5:00 am—Wakeup: unless the cats let me sleep later. Coffee comes first (in my favorite What Deadline? mug) and then right to the FitDesk (my stationary bike with a desk attached) for what is meant to be a quick check of the web but never ends up being quick (including email inbox, Facebook, and Twitter). I work on my laptop while watching the morning news on TV and pedaling for an hour or two. Multi-multitasking! Sometime before it gets too late in the morning I’ll change out of my nighttime PJs and into my daytime PJs (something comfortable that I wouldn’t be embarrassed to answer the door in when the UPS man comes, but definitely NOT “real” clothes).
7:00 am—Homework: Working from home means you have not only business work to do, but also housework, so I have to make sure the dog, cats, bird, fish and houseplants are all taken care of, the laundry is done, the garbage out, the mail in, the dishes done and the house clean. I truly hate housework so I have one word for everyone—Roomba! I finally sucked it up and bought one and, with the amount of pet hair in my house, this little vacuum has changed my life. I don’t curse at my carpets anymore. However, I did curse the few feet of snow we got in New York State in March this year.
9:00 am—Writing Work: What I’m working on depends on what is most pressing at the time. I’d love to say I write every day but the reality is I don’t. Only when I’m on a firm deadline with a book due is my priority getting words down on the page. If I concentrate, I can knock out 2,000 words in a little over an hour. If I’m distracted by the internet (or phone, or TV, or Instant Messages, or shopping online, or other work that’s more fun) those same 2,000 words can take me until 9 PM. Discipline is not my specialty. However, I’m an excellent procrastinator.
When a deadline isn’t pending, I spend most of my day on other work. That could be edits or proofreading a manuscript, or marketing and promotions. I spend a lot of time getting out newsletters to my mailing list, setting up Facebook ads and social media posts, designing quote graphics or desktop wallpaper or book covers in Photoshop, checking sales and ranks at vendors, interacting with readers and fellow authors, reading news online to keep abreast of industry trends, and researching.
3:00 pm—Snack!: There are days I’ve eaten lunch at 10:30 AM or forgotten to eat it until 1:30 PM but there seems to be one thing that is pretty consistent—by late afternoon I need a snack to hold me until dinner. Some of my favorites are almonds, hummus or cheese.
5:00 pm—Kitchen time: Some days I put the laptop on the counter, set a Ted-Talk to play or have the computer read me an article while I start dinner. Other days I’m very lucky that my husband loves to cook so he does it a lot. If I don’t have to prepare the evening meal I’ll keep working on the computer while watching the evening news.
8:00 pm—Bed and TV: I end the day relaxing in bed, usually covered in cats, in front of a sit com on TV or Netflix. Something light I can laugh at and don’t have to think too hard about until I go to sleep. I usually end up dozing off before 9PM no matter how hard I try to stay up later.