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What Do Authors Do All Day? by Tiffany Amber Stockton

What Do Authors Do All Day?

It always makes me smile when I speak at an event or do any kind of author appearance, and someone approaches to ask me what it’s like being an author. Many people have this grandiose idea in their mind. Somehow, the writer gets sensationalized or elevated to this mysterious pedestal, staring into empty space while the rest of the world fades away.

The reality?

Despite all my best-laid plans, a typical day doesn’t contain much writing at all! Surprised to learn that? Most non-writers usually are. For the majority of authors (not the 1% who actually make a full-time living on their writing like Dean Koontz or Nora Roberts), it’s not like the “9-5” job where you leave your home, go to work, focus on that work, then return home. When you’re a writer, your job and your work intertwine with your real life. If you’re also a parent with children at home, your family is thrown into the mix as well.

For me, this means waking up at 5:45 or 6am every morning so I can snatch a few quiet moments before everyone else is awake. Then, it’s turning myself into a drill sergeant as I attempt to get the kids and the husband moving in the right directions toward getting ready for the day. Ever heard the phrase about the challenge of herding cats? Yep. That’s spot on for my mornings.

Once everyone is out the door to work or school, that’s when I can sit down and write. Ha! That’s when I do the clean-up following the tornado that happened during the morning routine. It never ceases to amaze me how three people (husband and two kids) can make such a mess in such a short amount of time.

After the cleanup, I spend time with email correspondence. Otherwise, my inbox gets out of control! This could include following up with my agent on proposals out with potential publishers, scheduling coffee/tea dates with friends, interacting with teachers about the status of my children in school, confirming volunteer sign-ups for various activities, paying bills, and a host of other possibilities. This could also include business phone calls. And within this past year, I have also added being a substitute or guest teacher in our local school district, primarily at my children’s school.

On days when I’m not teacher, if I don’t have any early appointments that day, there are days when I get a good solid 2 hours of writing. Once my children are home again at 3:30, it’s focus back on family again until bedtime at eight. Then, there’s time with my husband discussing what needs to be done or handled and planning for the next day. If that all gets done, and I’m not mentally or physically exhausted, I MIGHT be able to squeeze in another thirty minutes or an hour of writing before I hit the hay.

So, there you have it. It might not be typical for every writer, but it IS the typical day for me. When I first started writing, I was single, so I had a lot more flexibility in my schedule. Now, I have learned to schedule my writing time just like I schedule anything else in my life. When I have a book deadline, the writing becomes a higher priority, and other things in life get rescheduled or shifted a little further down the list.

I have often questioned why God gave me a career before a husband and family, and I know somewhere in here, He *does* have a purpose, in spite of my career temporarily taking a back seat to my family and the challenging demands that presents. It will be fun seeing how His purpose unfolds through all this present craziness.


Thanks for visiting with me today, and many thanks to Clare for hosting me. As appreciation, I am offering a giveaway of a FREE ELECTRONIC COPY of my book in the Smoky Mountain Christmas collection, HOMETOWN MELODIES. All you have to do is visit my web site ( and find the name of the very first book I published. Also, what is the name of the collection released with my first 3 books included?

About Smoky Mountain Christmas

Claude Buchanan is turning 80. Ida Buchanan wants her husband to have an 80th birthday he’ll never forget. His one request is for all their children and grandchildren to be there for the party. They have four sons, and each one has a daughter—the heroines in each of the novellas. The cousins all share the last name of Buchanan. All four young women left Gatlinburg, Tennessee in the last few years—for reasons specific to each—and moved to another area or state. For that reason, they don’t want to return for the party. But because they love their grandparents, they do. Returning home forces each young woman to deal with what caused her to leave in the first place, and in each case, opens the door to true love. The birthday party takes place in Granddaddy and Granny Buchanan’s barn on Christmas Eve, and each of the four novellas end that same day, just prior to the party, which is featured in the epilogue accompanying the last book in the series.

About Hometown Melodies

Melody May Buchanan left Gatlinburg to pursue a life in the symphony. When a letter arrives asking her to return home for her granddaddy’s 80th birthday, she knows she must go. Leaving her fiancĂ© in Denver while the symphony is on break, she pushes behind her the reasons she left and heads home. But the homecoming isn’t quite what she expected, and she’s immediately faced with everything she loved about growing up there…even her childhood best friend, Drew. Old feelings surface, and she starts to wonder if she made a mistake. Then, her two worlds collide when her fiancĂ© arrives, and she discovers Drew has become quite a success in the music industry. Faced with the dilemma of which path to choose, Melody turns to God and her grandfather for advice. Either way, one man will get hurt. Which option is the best?


Tiffany Amber Stockton has been crafting and embellishing stories since childhood, when she was accused of having a very active imagination and cited with talking entirely too much. Today, she has honed those childhood skills to become a best-selling author and speaker who is also an advocate for literacy as an educational consultant with Usborne Books.

She lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, along with their two children and three dogs in Colorado. Through personal development, she strives to help others become their best from the inside out.

She has sold twenty-one (21) books so far and is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency. You can find her on Facebook and GoodReads and at her web site above.


Delia Latham said…
Wonderful post, Tiff! I'm glad to know I'm not the only author who's life is ultra-ordinary, and so far from glamorous it's laughable. lol

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