Happy Friday, bookworms!
How was everyone’s first week of October? Have you bought your Halloween costume yet?
Today, I have something fun for you all. I’m taking part in my first blog tour! While other book tours may include reviews or interviews, I decided to do a little something different.
Nicole Maggi, the wonderful author of What They Don’t Know, has written a little guest post for you lucky readers. Nicole has ever so kindly given us a look into her life, complete with what she gets up to while writing. I’m so excited!
Make sure you read to the end for a surprise.
Take it away, Nicole!
My life is a little all over the place, so it’s hard to boil it down to one typical day! I’m an author, but I’m also a mom, and I work an occasional part time day job…so my days are pretty scattered. But here’s what a day looks like for me when I don’t have anything else going on except writing (and mothering which is a 24/7 job of course!).
I usually get up around this time. If I want to work out first thing in the morning, I get up a little earlier, like 6:15 A.M. I always try to get a workout in, whether it’s working out to my PopSugar Fitness app, going for a walk or hike after I drop off my daughter at school, or a morning yoga class.
This is just crazy time, making breakfast and getting my daughter ready for school. She’s a dilly-dallier. I have NO idea where she gets that from, hahaha. I usually have to tell her at least three times to brush her teeth. She gets very easily distracted…by the iPad, by the necklace she decides at the last minute she wants to wear, by a random pen lying on her nightstand…
We’re out the door by 8:10 and off to school. After seeing her through the gate, I hang out with my mom friends for a bit, who are also dropping off their kids. We’re known as the Gate Gang. I know, it’s so lame and mom-ish…but these women are my village. It’s nice to have this time to connect with them on an almost daily basis.
This is my first writing time (unless I’m going to a yoga class, then half of it is my yoga time). I’ll make myself a latte and settle in to write. Or, I’ll go out to a coffee shop. I actually like writing in coffee shops better, but it really depends on what I’m working on. If I’m free writing or in deep edits, I work better in coffee shops. If I’m working through line or copy edits, I do better at home. When I was doing line and copy edits for What They Don’t Know, for some reason the corner of the squashy faux-leather couch in our playroom was the only spot that worked for me. Maybe because it was winter, and it was a super cozy place to be. I do actually have an office in the house, but I hardly ever write in there. Go figure.
Once a week I meet up with my bestie and critique partner Romina Garber (author of the Zodiac series under the name Romina Russell). We meet up at a cafe halfway between our two places since she’s on the Westside and I’m on the Eastside of LA. On those days I’m usually out from 11-3, and I almost always get a ton done when I’m with her.
This is usually when I take a break to eat lunch and run any errands I need to run. Confession: I like to eat my lunch in front of the television because I’m a total TV addict. I wish I could tell you I’m watching “good” TV like Insecure on HBO or The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu (two shows I do actually love and watch faithfully) but during lunch I’m usually low-browing it with old reruns of Friends or a Hallmark Channel movie, especially if it’s during the magical months of Hallmark’s Countdown To Christmas, when they run Hallmark Christmas movies 24/7.
If I’m on a deadline, I’ll go back to writing or editing. If I’m not on a deadline, I’ll either use this time to write more, do promotional work for my books (on social media or via email), and answer any emails that may have come up during the day. Since I’m on the West Coast, and most of publishing is on the East Coast, I can pretty much assume that by 3 P.M. I’m not going to be getting any more work emails. I usually check my emails throughout the day, but if they don’t need an immediate response I’ll wait until after I’m done writing.
Also, if I’m not on a deadline, I may need to devote this time to life stuff instead of work stuff. I’m the troop leader for my daughter’s Girl Scout Troop, so if there’s something that needs to be done with that, this is when I’ll do it. Same goes for anything going on at my daughter’s school, or something that needs to be done around the house. I try to leave that stuff for the afternoon instead of the morning, because I find I write better in the morning, but if I have to switch it, I will.
I pick up my daughter from her after school program around 5:45, and then it’s straight home, dinner, any homework that she needs to finish, and family time. My husband usually doesn’t get home until right before my daughter goes to bed, so this time is usually just me and her. If she’s finished everything she needs to do, we’ll cuddle up on the couch together and watch cooking shows. We’re very into The Great British Baking Show, Nailed It, and Sugar Rush on Netflix. We also love Chopped, especially Chopped Junior with kid contestants. My daughter loves watching these shows, but does she help me in the kitchen? Nope.
My daughter goes to bed around 8:30. After she’s in bed, my husband and I get our time together. We have a Jacuzzi in our backyard, and there’s nothing better than getting in the tub after a long day! We’ll use that time to decompress and hash out our days. Then we usually watch some TV and go to bed by 11. I try to read before bedtime—it’s my only reading time during the day—but sometimes I’m just too tired. Right now, I’m reading The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert and it’s so good!
I very rarely write at night. There’s such a break between picking my daughter up from school that by the time she’s in bed, it’s just too hard for me to get back into writing. But if I am under a major crunch deadline, I’ll write instead of watching TV at night. I try really hard not to put myself in that position though. I think it’s important to have an end to my work day; to put the work aside and focus on my family. Since I work at home, and because writing is such a pervasive thing, I can’t always shut it down. Sometimes, if a sentence or paragraph is giving me trouble throughout the day, inspiration will strike while I’m making dinner, and I’ll have to take a minute to open my computer and jot down the idea. That’s just the nature of being an artist. Like being a mom, you can’t just turn it off at any point in the day.
11 P.M.-6 A.M.
Sleep! Hopefully! And then I get up and do it all over again!
Thanks, Nicole, for that lovely insight into your life. I love reading things like this, especially because I’m such a nosy person. I like reading about an author’s habits, and what they get up to, even if they’re not writing. If you want to check out Nicole’s latest novel, What They Don’t Know, all links are available below.
What They Don’t Know by Nicole Maggi – Available From October 2nd
Mellie has always been the reliable friend, the good student, the doting daughter. But when an unspeakable act leads her to withdraw from everyone she loves, she is faced with a life-altering choice―a choice she must face alone.
Lise stands up―and speaks out―for what she believes in. And when she notices Mellie acting strangely, she gets caught up in trying to save her…all while trying to protect her own secret. One that might be the key to helping Mellie.
Told through Mellie and Lise’s journal entries, this powerful, emotional novel chronicles Mellie’s struggle to decide what is right for her and the unbreakable bond formed by the two girls on their journey.
Nicole was born in the suburban farm country of upstate New York, and began writing at a very early age. Of course, her early works consisted mainly of poems about rainbows and unicorns, although one of them was good enough to win honorable mention in a national poetry contest! (Perhaps one of the judges was a ten-year-old girl.) Throughout high school, her creative writing was always nurtured and encouraged.
Nicole attended Emerson College as an acting major, and graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Post-college, she worked as an actress in New York City for over a decade, focusing mainly on Shakespeare and the classics.
Now living in Los Angeles, Nicole balances writing full-time with motherhood. WINTER FALLS, the first in her TWIN WILLOWS TRILOGY (Medallion Press, 2014) is her debut novel. She has a stand-alone novel, HEARTLINES, coming out in February 2015 with SourceBooks Fire, as well as the second and third novels in the TWIN WILLOWS TRILOGY in 2015 and 2016.
Now for the fun part.
Nicole is hosting a giveaway! Two lucky people could win a signed copy of What They Don’t Know. All you have to do is enter the rafflecopter, cross your fingers and hope for the best. The giveaway will run from October 2nd until October 11th, and is US only. Good luck!
WHAT THEY DON’T KNOW BY NICOLE MAGGI – BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE
What A Nerd Girl Says – Guest Post
Bookschief Managed – Interview
Movies Shows n Books – Guest Post
Luna Reviews – Guest Post
Gryffindor Books – Interview
Knightingale Reviews – Interview
Starkiller Reads – Interview
Nite Lite Book Reviews – Guest Post
The Readers Antidote – Guest Post
If you got this far, thank you so much for reading! I must say, I really enjoyed being a part of this blog tour. Let me know if you check out What They Don’t Know, you can find me on all my social media’s here. I would love to hear your opinions on it. Happy reading!