To ask if any mumsnetters write for a living?

(151 Posts)
squishyeyeballs Thu 30-Jul-15 00:30:17

I was quite surprised at the lack of people who are professional writers in the recent thread about job/salary. Surely you must be out there somewhere! And also, those of you who have kids and write-how do you find/make time?? I'm trying to finish a first novel draft at the moment and finding it impossible!

RitaKiaOra Thu 30-Jul-15 00:51:08

Imperial blether is the person you need.
She also knows other novelists on here including the rather fantastic Fiona Jane Collins (sorry, I do not know her MN persona) but I read her chick lit and loved it.
Think many set a set time to it and just write/take off the rough edges later.
Or maybe stupid o'clock or when kids are in bed or a couple of hours if kids are in nursery. I could not do it with pre-schoolers, that's for sure! ignores number of mumsnet posts

RitaKiaOra Thu 30-Jul-15 00:54:11

Oh and if the AIBU was: to think there are other writers out there then No YANBU there are wink
If it was AIBU to think it's not possible to write whilst wrangling kids YAPNBU
(probably though some must do).
But....YABU to put this in AIBU rather than books topic where the authors hang out wink
<rocks back and forth in Pedants' corner>

Fatmomma99 Thu 30-Jul-15 00:55:00

My DH is a published writer <boasts>

A short story in an anthology. Took him a year to write/be published. We are VERY proud!!!!

RitaKiaOra Thu 30-Jul-15 01:04:26

So you should be. Which anthology? We can play Guess the DH Is it available on its own anywhere? What style of short story? <nosey>

emopod Thu 30-Jul-15 01:04:43

DH writes for a living (many things published). Took care of our DTSs for 20 months until a ruptured disc meant we had to get other childcare.

He had to cut down hours when they were born, but when they are home with him, he does most work between 8pm and 2am, and I do mornings stuff. It takes a lot of discipline with small kids in the house, but it is possible.

RagstheInvincible Thu 30-Jul-15 01:08:15

DW is a published writer (novels and short stories). Writes late at night/early in the mornings when rest of us are asleep.

KateAdiesEarrings Thu 30-Jul-15 01:09:33

I'm not sure if I count as I write mainly for businesses, journals, etc, rather than fiction. However, when DS was tiny, I followed a similar schedule to emopod 's husband ie I wrote when DS went down for the night. I found it impossible to write during the day.

Sceptimum Thu 30-Jul-15 06:40:30

I was making decent money as a freelance features writer (worked 4 days a week in an office, the other one freelancing) but since Childzilla's arrival 2 years ago I have failed to write, pretty much, as my 4 day a week job now takes 5 days as I am constantly taking time off for medical appts, daycare stuff, tradesmen visits etc. Need to muster up some willpower, turn off MN and Facebook and get going again!

RhiWrites Thu 30-Jul-15 08:03:23

I have 14 professionally published books but I don't have children.

I joined mumsnet to learn about the needs of young parents because my sisters between them have 3 under 3.

I find it's helpful to set aside dedicated time to write. But I don't deny it's difficult to keep that discipline.

squishyeyeballs Thu 30-Jul-15 12:20:45

I'd love to be able to get up early and do it but I find that no matter how quiet I am, one of the dcs will still wake up and distract me. I have gotten great work done at night but if I did it every night as I would miss dh! I guess I'll just have to make that sacrifice.

I agree that the best thing to do it get the rough story out first, it can always be tweaked later. It was a major stumbling block for me in the beginning to get used to noy writing perfectly and beautifully first time around. First drafts are always crap!

Oh and kudos to anyone who manages to write, never mind get published! My dad self published his first book at the ripe old age of 62. He did it more for himself than to make money but it spurred him on to keep going and he is now a fairly well known short story author.

It's so hard to be disciplined and to switch off the internet! Imagone, I've been lurking around mn for a year now and I hadn't even realised that there's a books section blush because I am so engrossed in aibu wjhere all the juicy stuff goes down!

GoooRooo Thu 30-Jul-15 12:23:10

I have a non-fiction careers book published and a blog that I write on regularly. I have written pieces for newpapers and industry mags in the past but I wouldn't describe myself as a professional writer.

Mostly I'm a recruiter and trainer.

GoooRooo Thu 30-Jul-15 12:24:00

Oh and I wrote that book while on maternity leave. It was hard! I'm about to go on maternity leave again and have laughed at anyone who suggests I write another one.

StarsInTheNightSky Thu 30-Jul-15 12:32:01

I have written (and had published) some trashy historical romance novels (written indeed a pseudonym grin) and some scientific papers/texts (related to my previous career). They bring in a nice supplemental income.
DH and I own and run ranch in South America, plus have a toddler so I don't get much time to write, though I do have insomnia so often write in the middle of the night, or very early morning when I cannot be caught blushing in shame. grin

StarsInTheNightSky Thu 30-Jul-15 12:32:31

*under, not indeed

Imlookingatboats Thu 30-Jul-15 12:37:48

I am fascinated by your life, Stars! I noticed you the other day when you posted in the what do you do for a living thread.

In my mind you're a Catherine Zeta Jones lookalike dashing about on a trusty steed, baby at your hip.

Now you tell me you write!

(don't burst my bubble)

FallingGoldfinch Thu 30-Jul-15 12:48:47

I went into writing books when my kids were younger because it was so flexible, so I definitely think it can be done. They're all up and running now, so don't really need me that much, but I found it so useful to have a job that I could just dip in and out of (and that I could do in my pyjamas).

I ghost - but am thinking of starting fiction - and that really works for me as I have to work to (often very tight) deadlines, so can't faff about. I don't work to set times as such, but when a deadline is looming, I'll do a specific amount of words a day. If I get nothing done during school hours, then I'll just stay up until I have - I do seem to work better from about 8pm anyway, so finding your own natural work time is a good idea.

It's the easiest, most indulgent, best job in the world grin.

TwistInMySobriety Thu 30-Jul-15 12:52:32

I do. I have a day job too but it's a nice lucrative sideline.

Saltedcaramel2014 Thu 30-Jul-15 12:56:09

Hi. I am a writer of women's fiction (novels). I'm writing my eighth at the moment. I write full-time, so have childcare 4 1/2 days a week. I don't think I'd manage to get much done otherwise, endless respect for those who write in naps/eves - I can't do it! So I guess I do it just as every other working mum does their job. I set a word count each day and do my best to stick to it. I love what I do and feel lucky to be doing it, now even more so as the flexible hours help a lot. I'm extremely skilled at ignoring all housework.

pinkdelight Thu 30-Jul-15 12:56:32

I write scripts for a living - TV, radio, theatre etc. It's a great job but I couldn't do it while looking after the kids. I've used a LOT of childcare. Like any freelance career, it's hard to turn work down. You have to be available, work weekends, whatever it takes to hit the deadline. And because of the nature of the job, you're kind of in your own world a lot. It's quite a selfish job, I think. Sometimes I feel bad, but then I bet Tom Stoppard didn't feel bad when he shut himself up in his office. And I'd go nuts if I didn't do it.

Good luck with getting your novel finished. Just gotta find the time somehow and keep going, and going, and going...

pinkdelight Thu 30-Jul-15 12:57:51

Ha ha, salted, I ignore all housework too. Somehow I just step over the mess and don't see that the dishwasher needs emptying. It helps to have a very lovely and supportive DH.

Saltedcaramel2014 Thu 30-Jul-15 12:57:58

stars your life sounds amazing! Can I ask what country you're in?

squoosh Thu 30-Jul-15 12:59:00

WordFactory writes for a living. Successfully by the sounds of things too.

Saltedcaramel2014 Thu 30-Jul-15 13:03:45

pinkdelight the dishwasher is in my blind spot. Having a partner who thinks you being a writer is a good idea is a really, really useful thing.

TheRealAmyLee Thu 30-Jul-15 13:04:42

I used to do it. I am trying to get back into it now kids are all at school. You need to find a quiet time of day and set that aside to write in. I struggled when DC were small.

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