Writing Wednesday: Do you ever switch off?

One of the things I love about writing as a job is that you can use everything. As Nora Ephron’s parents told her, “Everything’s copy.” But for me this also means that life and work get mixed up and I can find I’m working all the time. Let’s take a day last week (when I, um, drafted this post) as an example.

When I got back from the school run, I sat down with Joe and, while he “brummed” his cars all round the lounge (Harry never did this, it’s highly entertaining) I read an old novel, the structure of which I’m nicking using as inspiration for the book I’m writing at the moment, and made notes.

Once I finished that book (I only had two chapters left), I started reading a book a friend sent me to review. That done, Joe went up to bed and, once I’d got some paid work out of the way, I started work on the new book I’m writing for Spring Into Summer.

With half an hour left to go, I thought I’d put something on to listen to/watch in the background while I did some more writing / internet footling and remembered there was an episode of The Big Bang Theory I wanted to watch. Why did I want to watch it? Research for another book I’ll be writing soon. (A Top Sekrit book! Oh, I love having a Top Sekrit project!)

Don’t get me wrong, I love it. I wanted to turn my hobby (reading/writing) into my job and I feel really lucky that I’ve been able to, but sometimes I would just like to switch off. Do you know what I mean?

9 thoughts on “Writing Wednesday: Do you ever switch off?

  1. I love this! I never switch off. I am always making notes and being silly thinking “what if” but it helps me in some weird way to focus. Even travelling home to and from work or walking the dog in the park – I tend to get some of my best ideas during this “down time” and of course, watching TV, reading articles in magazines and watching tv shows and documentaries just fizzes the old brain cells.

    Best of luck with SIS and with the new Sekrit Project!

    1. Thanks! And that’s exactly it, even when I’m watching TV or a film, or playing with the kids, I’m always on the lookout for ideas.

      And thanks for the luck wishes!

  2. God, yes! Maybe the unswitchoffable thing is penance for being lucky enough to be published…

    All I know is that I used to be able to relax and switch off (for days at a time!) and now I can’t. There’s also the constant Sunday-night-and-I-haven’t-done-my-homework feeling… GAH!

  3. This is why I can’t read magazines for pleasure anymore and I certainly can’t read them before bed as it starts my mind with ideas and I can’t sleep!

  4. I don’t even get paid to write and yet I still keep going from morning until evening. I write ideas as soon as I wake up. I spend all day either writing, blogging, reading and reviewing and find normal life gets in the way. How inconsiderate of my children to need food and clean clothes!

  5. I’m like that voice in the guy’s head in ‘stranger than fiction’ (it was emma thompson;s, wasn’t it?) where everything I do/see/hear/thing of becomes an instant first line or title, or character or situation…. yup, same here….. thank god for sleeping tablets…..!

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