Read how my friend Christina Freeburn balances family and a busy writing schedule! - Pam
November is a busy month for me with two books being released. This started at the end of April when I attended the Malice Domestic convention. I saw some cute postcards from a new publishing company, Henery Press. The covers grabbed my attention, and I couldn't help snapping them up. And then checked out the press. I was excited to learn the books they published had a similar tone and feel to the scrapbooking mystery I completed, and, even better, they were taking submissions.
I was already happily writing my New Beginning Series for Desert Breeze Publishing. The first book, Lost Then Found, had come out November 1, 2011 and the second one, Led Astray, was coming out May 1. I was finishing up the third book, Safe and Sound (which came out November 1), when I decided to send off my mystery. I didn't expect to hear back for a few months, and if accepted I figured it would come out sometime in 2013 as I was wrapping up the New Beginning Series.
A few days later, I received an email from the editor saying she loved it and wanted the book. Not only that, but it would come out this year--November. I took a deep breath and agreed. I'm fortunate that I don't have to work outside the home, so I could concentrate on writing. And that was what I had to do--concentrate. Stay focused.
I hunkered down, took time management seriously, planned my days on my calendar and, when really crazy, created a "To Do" notebook where I kept a weekly schedule for family, volunteer, and writing. Once 'on the page,' the task was able to leave my mind so I could concentrate on the actual project rather than thinking about everything that needed to be done.
Going from one book to the other wasn't as hard as I feared as the two series have different voices (first person with a humorous tone, third person with a serious tone) so I didn't get the projects confused. My teens helped around the house, and my husband jumped in whenever the computer and I weren't getting along (this happened a lot). The main culprit was the printer that decided it wanted to quit numerous times when I needed to print out the manuscripts. I like to do the first main edits on paper.
It also came in handy to have incredible author friends who've shown me...and encouraged me...that not only can it be done...but I can do it.