Today’s guest is fellow Headline Accent author Colette McCormick who’s here to talk about her writing regime. Colette’s latest novel An Uncomplicated Man is released on 5th December in paperback and e-book format – go on, treat yourself to a Christmas gift! Welcome, Colette! Smashing to have you.
One of the first things that I was asked after I told people about the book deal that I’d managed to secure was ‘So, are you writing full time now?’ Mmm…no!! I work full time and have to fit the writing in and around that.
Five days a week I leave the house about 7.30am and I get home just after 6pm. Tea is usually around 7pm, the dishes done by 8pm and I usually go to bed about 11.30pm. That leaves a window of approximately three and a half hours for everything else.
I enjoy watching TV as much as the next person so my writing time usually starts about 10pm. That’s the time that my husband used to get ready for work when he worked a permanent night shift and one of the conditions of him taking early retirement two years ago was that he didn’t interfere with my routine.
On days that I’m not at my job with Barnardo’s there is more opportunity for writing and I’ll usually manage to ‘write’ for double the amount of time that I do on work days. I could be editing or researching but it all comes under the umbrella of ‘write.’ Someone asked me recently if I wrote all day on my day off but the truth is that because I work full time, my days off are full of shopping, cleaning and all the other mundane things that need to be done.
So, my writing time is precious and I try to be disciplined about it. That’s easier said than done when you consider how easy it is to spend too much time faffing around on the internet. I find that having a deadline to work to focuses the mind so if I don’t have a deadline set by a publisher, I set one for myself. It would be too easy for me to think “I’ll do it later,” otherwise.
My first book took years to refine and get to the stage where a publisher would take a chance on it so it was a challenge to have to write subsequent books in just twelve months. Another friend, one that writes poetry for pleasure, said that I should tell the publisher that deadlines stifle creativity. Good luck with that one Gwen.
My writing regime is far from ideal and there are times, especially if there is a deadline looming, when I would love more time to do it but I’ve asked myself if I would like to be a full-time writer and I think the answer is no. I enjoy my job and I like the people that I work with. So, for now, I’ll have to make the most of the time that I have.
Daniel Laither is a mild-mannered and uncomplicated bank manager, but when his boss asks him for a favour, things begin to get tangled. Introduced to businessman Arthur Braithwaite, Daniel reluctantly agrees to a financial arrangement that will create an unbreakable link between them.
When Daniel meets Lucy, Braithwaite’s daughter, he becomes a man obsessed. From the steamy afternoons spent together in hotel rooms, to evenings out with Lucy in fancy restaurants, Daniel’s life moves a million miles from the one he’d had.
He finds himself lying to his friends, his colleagues and, most importantly, his wife. He borrows money from a loan shark to afford this double life, but when the debt demands to be paid, he contemplates stealing from the bank. When Lucy falls pregnant and Braithwaite insists upon a marriage, Daniel has to choose between his two lives…
To buy Colette’s books…
Originally a city girl, Colette has made her home in a one of the many former mining villages in County Durham. When not working as a retail manager for a large children’s charity she will more than likely be writing, even if it’s only a shopping list. She also enjoys cooking, gardening and taking the dog on long walks in the countryside near her home. She has been married for almost forty years and has two grown up sons.