|In sickness and in health...|
I fit my writing around these, and school runs. My system worked well until my husband was felled by Campylobacter. This is a horrible form of food poisoning. He spent the best part of three weeks in bed (and the bathroom), except for the times when I was ferrying him between the emergency department, various tests and doctor's appointments, and pharmacies.
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My Other Half has a high pressure job, and he's on call around the clock as his firm has clients around the world. In many respects it's like writing (apart from the size and regularity of his earnings!). Pressure is good—it's what drives us to succeed. Writers can react to the pressure of deadlines, get the work done and move on. The stress of a piece being rejected, or lack of recognition for the novel you've battled to create is bad. Very bad.
Too much stress crushes your immune system. Problems snowball until your health breaks down, and you're forced to take a break. When you return, clearing the backlog while trying to push forward traps you in a downward spiral.
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I stop work well before bedtime, and spend an hour or so relaxing and looking for laughs. Nobody can function at the top of their game if they're too wound up to get enough sleep.
From now on I'm not going to answer the phone on its first ring, or reply to emails the second they come in. I only wish I could persuade my husband to do the same!
Incidentally, although the Department Of Public Health have investigated us, our relatives, friends, neighbours, work colleagues and everywhere we've visited (from several weeks before my husband fell ill until after he stopped being infectious), the source of his infection has never been traced.
What's your tip for a productive working day? I'm offering a copy of my short romance My Dream Guy for a comment picked at random, on 21st November.
When she isn't cooking, gardening or beekeeping, Christina Hollis writes contemporary fiction starring complex men and independent women. Her books have been translated into more than a dozen languages, and she’s sold nearly three million books worldwide. You can catch up with her at http://www.christinahollis.blogspot.com, on Twitter, Facebook, and see a full list of her published books at christinahollis.com
Her current release, Heart Of A Hostage, is published by The Wild Rose Press and available at myBook.to/HeartOfAHostage worldwide, and from http://bit.ly/2f8dKp1 in the US.