Monday, April 9, 2012

A Day in the Life: Christa Desir

How excited am I to have Christa Desir's awesome and insanely long Day in the Life? I'm pleased to present my fellow insomniac from outside Chicago!

Christa is represented by Sarah LaPolla at Curtis Brown LTD and her debut novel TRAINWRECK comes out with SimonPulse in the fall of 2013.
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I should probably caveat this entire “Day In My Life” with the information that my day job is editing romance novels. I love my life and will hopefully show you here how I balance my different lives as writer and editor and mom. Also, don’t judge, my mom usually helps me but she’s on vacation.

3:14am: Wake up. I’m an insomniac, which actually works quite well since my work senior editor lives in New Zealand. The two of us exchange 14 emails regarding author issues.

5:45am: Wake up again in a puddle of my own drool, clutching my iPad. Make 8 cups of coffee. Spend 90 minutes revising a scene in my YA BLEED LIKE ME that takes place in a crack house. Send scene to my friend who has actually been in crack house (long story) to see if it’s authentic.

7:15am: Make lunches for kids. Make breakfast for kids. Have 4th cup of coffee. Get everyone dressed. Scream at all my children for reading too much during breakfast so we’re all running late.

8:30am: Drop children off at school. Return to 18 submissions waiting in my inbox. Cry just a little bit (it’s true, editors never catch up). Send cover artist email regarding the uni-boob that appears to exist on the rough draft of one of my authors’ covers.

8:45am: Uni-boob problem solved. Begin searching for appropriate excerpt for cowboy romance I’m editing. Find a really good one but it involves the p-word. Email boss to see if I can star out the p-word. Email new authors I will be working with to say hi and tell them the kind of books I’m interested in. (Umm…usually ones that involve the p-word). Read.

10:30am: Receive phone call from the Voices and Faces Project founder about upcoming testimonial writing workshop. Have discussion about horrible crap happening to women right now in the world.

11:15am: Go pick up small son at school. Yes, this was the car pool number given to me. Randomly.

12pm: Make small son awesome lunch of smoked gouda grilled cheese, tomatoes and banana. I eat an avocado. (Don’t judge). Putz around on Twitter (which usually means DMing my friend Lucy).

1:15pm: Take small son to music class. Go outside to work on formatting my next author’s manuscript in my car. Get as far as removing all the extra spaces before periods and removing fake em dashes.

2:30pm: Spend 30 minutes going through all the author submissions that I received this morning from slush box to make sure that none of them have already been published or are under contract with someone else. (This is damn annoying, but it sucks when you fall in love with a story only for the author to write you and say, “Oh, I forgot to tell you, this is under contract with a different publisher.”)

3pm: Go with small son to pick up medium son at school. Boys eat snacks and play downstairs while I finish formatting manuscript.

4:30pm: Pick daughter up from Brownies. Then start reading one of the manuscripts I got. Badger medium son into doing homework and practicing piano. Announce to Twitter that I love the word “lick” and hate the word “moist.”

5pm: Cocktail hour. Along with preparing awesome salad that I chopped up while reading manuscript. Not much of manuscript gets read bc author emails me with a small crisis.

6pm: Dinner chaos.

7:30pm: Get author approval on the excerpt for the cowboy book. Although, she also asked the p-word question.

7:40pm: Read books to children.

8:30pm: Teeth brushed. Kids in bed. Come up with idea for next WIP that I think might work. Jot down notes.

9:15pm: Find my husband watching SMASH (ahem) so decide to update my work spreadsheets. I might be having another cocktail by this point. Maybe.

10pm: Check in with my Tweeps. Collapse in heap on the floor. Cajole husband into back massage.

So yes, that’s 90 minutes of actual writing and a whole lot of other things in my day. Most days, I try to get 2-3 hours in. But as I mentioned, my mom is out of town so this week is tricky.

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