Today I’m thrilled to welcome author Phoebe Morgan to the book review café to share her day in the life of a author post. Phoebe Morgan is the author of The Doll House, it’s a gripping debut psychological thriller and one of my top reads of 2017, you can read my review here The Doll House by Phoebe Morgan #BookReview @phoebe_A_Morgan @HQDigital #2017MustReads.
I’m glad to see I’m not the only nosy person I have been amazed at the response to this feature , and I’m so pleased you seem to be enjoying them so much, and there are lots more to come. So anyway I’m sure your all eager to see what a day in the life of author Phoebe Morgan looks like, so here you go.
A day in the life of author Phoebe Morgan
I work full time as a commissioning editor at HarperCollins, so most of my writing is either done in the evenings or at weekends. I always wish I could be the kind of person who springs out of bed at 5am and dashes off 2000 words before going to work, but sadly I’m not a morning person! I prefer to write when I get home, cosied up with my laptop either in my flat or in a café somewhere.
When I was writing my first book, The Doll House, I used to go to either Pret (the wifi there is so bad that it couldn’t distract me!) or to my favourite café in Islington which sold cheap coffee and crepes. If I’m really needing to get some serious work done, I have to put my phone in another room so that I can’t play with it – I’m awful for procrastinating and getting distracted! I like to write at a table or sometimes (shamefully) in bed; luckily, my laptop is nice and small so I can pretty much take it anywhere. Depending on how I’m feeling I’ll either have tea, coffee or a glass of red wine by my side when I’m writing, and if I’m at home I’ll usually light a candle too as I find them quite calming.
When I’m writing a first draft, I try really hard to be strict with myself and write 1000 words a day – no matter how terrible they are. For me, I need to just get that initial draft onto the page, and then I can get to work on the edits, which is much more enjoyable because you already have 80,000 words or so to play with. The blank page can be quite daunting, but once the body of the work is written, things get a bit easier. I’ll usually write the 1000 words in one go, or try to get most of it down and then finish it off later on if needs be – as long as I’ve written it by the time I go to sleep, then it’s okay. I find it’s also good to finish writing in the middle of a scene or at the beginning of a new scene, so that when I come back to it the day after I know at least how I want the next few lines to go and am not met with instant panic at the thought of sitting down to write!
I’ve found connecting with other writers incredibly useful – it’s good to get encouragement and motivation from other people who are trying to meet their word counts too. Once I’ve finished writing for the day, I might message them to see how they are getting on, then make myself get up and do something else – being hunched over a computer is not good for your back or your eyes! I live right next to an overground station so I like going outside to the little balcony and getting some fresh air as the trains go by, listening to their rhythm and mulling over my characters and where I want my plot to go next.
Some days as a writer are good – the words come easily and you might get the spark and excitement of a new idea – but some are bad, when you can’t think what to write next and feel as though what you’ve done so far is rubbish. I think the key is to push through the bad days and persevere – your next idea might be just around the corner!
About Phoebe Morgan
Phoebe Morgan is an author and commissioning editor. She studied English at Leeds University after growing up in the Suffolk countryside. She has previously worked as a journalist and now edits crime and women’s fiction for a publishing house during the day, and writes her own books in the evenings. She lives in London and you can follow her on Twitter @Phoebe_A_Morgan, or find her blog about publishing and writing at https://phoebemorganauthor.com/ The Doll House is her debut novel.