When Does Your Brain Wake Up?

bird-worm-2Early bird or night owl?  Most writers I know seem to be one or the other.

Some of us have brains that come alive just as the sun is setting.  Others do their best work between sunrise and brunch.  I’m the second kind – an early bird writer.

Right now, my writing hours are limited.  Every day, I report to a full-time job around 6:45 am.  I work my eight hours.  I run errands afterward, and I take a long walk almost every evening.  Somewhere in there, I eat dinner and oversee the business of publishing.

When I try to write in the evening, I end up frustrated.  It’s just now how I’m wired.  Only brainstorming works for me after sunset because it’s free-form and messy and for my eyes only.

On weekdays, I could wake up around 3 am to score a few hours of writing time.  While I was writing my By Eyes Unseen series, I did this for more than a year.  But it’s tough, and long-term sleep deprivation does little to improve an author’s work (or job performance or social life).

books-for-researchSo, on the weekends, I embark on marathon writing sessions – four to eight hours at a time depending on when I wake up.  If I’m in the zone, I can crank out an entire chapter and review it after a late lunch.

During this phase, the research continues with lots of fact-checking, map-reading, and synonym-finding.  I enjoy this aspect of the process as much as any other.  For me, writing is a symphony of actions.  Every moment contributes to the momentum.

Writing is a solitary, even sacred, experience – one I cherish and protect.

About F. E. Greene

F. E. Greene loves coffee, castles, crumpets, and the cat next door almost as much as she loves writing. She is the award-winning author of multiple bestselling series including contemporary romance (Richer in Love), time-travel romance (Love Across Londons), and fantasy adventure (By Eyes Unseen). Her nonfiction series All Things Brighter focuses on writing fiction and poetry. A novelist, songwriter, poet, and photographer, she has taught young journalists and coached creative writers in both scholastic and volunteer settings. Greene's novels blend feel-good romance, mild suspense, a touch of whimsy, and her steadfast affection for all things British.
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