Today on Writer Wednesday we welcome Lindsay Harrel, author of The Secrets of Paper and Ink.
Enter below for a chance to win a copy of The Secrets of Paper and Ink! Winner announced right here next week. Congratulations to, Chanel Monroe, the winner of Jaime Jo Wright’s The Curse of Misty Wayfair! Please e-mail my assistant Christen with your mailing address! Note: This post contains affiliate links.
A Day in the Life of Best-Selling Author and SAHM Lindsay Harrel
People often express amazement at the fact that I can find time to write with two little boys at home.
Frankly, I am too. 😉
My days are filled with Paw Patrol, Ninja Turtles, and PJ Masks. I break up fights between my four-year-old and nearly two-year-old more times than I can count in between doing the dishes, making the next meal, and staring down a pile of laundry (that, quite honestly, rarely leaves the basket folded).
But one of my good author friends told me this before I had my first child: you find time for the things you’re passionate about. And, even though there are many times I wish I could do more writing and less chasing of toddlers, I have somehow found the time to write at least one book a year plus market and be active on social media.
Actually, “somehow” isn’t really accurate. I know it’s God’s blessing that’s allowed me to squeeze extra time out of the few precious hours a week I have to write. That, and the generosity of my mother-in-law and step-mom, who watch the kids for me once a week. Oh, and the support of a husband who believes in my dreams. I’m definitely blessed.
Ready for a peek into my oh-so-glamorous life? Other than the days when my kiddos are at a grandma’s house, here’s a typical day for me:
5:45/6 am: Wake up and make my husband’s breakfast and lunch before he heads out the door.
6:15 am: Quiet time with God
7 am: Kids are up! Make breakfast, eat breakfast, clean up breakfast.
8 am: Get everyone ready for an outing of some sort.
9 am: Outing of some sort (because staying home too much drives me bonkers with two littles!): Bible study, gym, Costco, etc.
11 am: Make lunch for the kids, make lunch for me, catch up on social media while my kids play after eating for 10 minutes (LOL)
12:30pm-3pm: Naptime!! Which means this is my prime working time! If I’m drafting a book, I aim to write one scene. If I’m revising or writing a blog post, I just do as much as I can in this time while my kids nap or do quiet time. It makes for a long quiet time for my four-year-old, so my time has been more interrupted lately than I like.
3 pm: Reading with my oldest; “school” for him (I just do some activities out of a book); kids play while I do household chores, start dinner, etc.
5:30 pm: Dinner as a family once my husband is home
6:30 pm: Family walk if we don’t have any evening activities
7/7: 30 pm: Kids in bed
7:30-9:30 pm: Me time!! I used to work during this time, and I still will if I’m on deadline. However, I’ve found that I need to refill my tank if I’m going to have any sort of patience with my kiddos the next day. So, I try to read and sometimes watch television during this time. Also, this is my time to hang out with my husband apart from our family times in the evening.
10 pm: I aim to make this bedtime! Sometimes I get really sucked into a book (you know how it is, I’m sure!) and stay up later.
On Saturdays, I clean the house and meal plan. Sundays are for church, family time, and rest.
If you’re a writer and wondering how to get everything done when you’ve got a busy life, just remember—one day at a time. One scene, one chapter, one book at a time. You’ve got this. If you’re passionate about writing, you’ll make it happen, even if it’s not as much as you’d like it to be at the time.
I know there will be a time when my kids won’t need me as much and I can write more. For now, I try to lean into my season of life and be grateful that I still get to do what I love while raising my kids.
Lindsay Harrel is a lifelong book nerd who lives in Arizona with her young family and two golden retrievers in serious need of training. She’s held a variety of writing and editing jobs over the years and now juggles stay-at-home mommyhood with writing novels. When she’s not writing or chasing after her children, Lindsay enjoys making a fool of herself at Zumba, curling up with anything by Jane Austen, and savoring sour candy one piece at a time.
More about The Secrets of Paper and Ink
As a counselor, Sophia Barrett is trained to help people cope with their burdens. But when she meets a new patient whose troubles mirror her own, she realizes she hasn’t dealt with the pain of her recent past. After making a snap decision to get away for the summer, Sophia moves overseas to an apartment above a charming bookstore in Cornwall, England. She is hopeful she will find peace there surrounded by her favorite thing: great literature.
Bookstore owner Ginny Rose is desperate to save her business without asking for help from a husband who’s decided to take a break from their marriage. Ginny never imagined she’d be solely responsible for keeping afloat her husband’s dream, but the unexpected friendship with her new renter has her feeling more optimistic. Between the two of them—and Ginny’s brother-in-law, William—the bookstore might stand a chance.
Then Sophia finds a notebook in the bookstore that contains journal entries from Emily Fairfax, a governess who lived in Cornwall more than 150 years ago. Sophia learns that Emily harbored a secret passion for becoming an authoress—as well as a deep love for her childhood friend, Edward, whose station she dared not dream to touch.
Eager to know more of Emily’s story, Sophia goes on a quest—dragging Ginny and William with her—to discover the heart of the woman behind the beautiful entries. Soon Ginny’s need to save the bookstore becomes more than a way to save her marriage, and Sophia finds new purpose of her own. Together they find that sometimes both heartache and hope can reach across the centuries.