Writer's Routine

By Dan Simpson

In every episode we look inside the daily diary of a writer, to peak at the secrets of their success. How do they plan their day and maximise their creativity, in order to plot and publish a bestseller?Some are frantic night-owls, others roll out of bed into their desks, and a few lock themselves away for days in the woods - but none have a regular 9 to 5, and we'll find out how they've managed it.

  1. 1.
    Naomi Ishiguro, author of 'Common Ground' - Debut novelist talks about ideas from chaos, impersonal writing spaces, and pushing through to the end.
  2. 2.
    Nick Petrie, author of 'The Breaker' - Thriller writer talks about getting the first draft right, perfecting the space, and the inner drill sergeant.
  3. 3.
    Sarah Leipciger, author of 'Coming Up For Air' - Writer discusses teaching creativity, thorough research, and unexplored mysteries.
  4. 4.
    Lucy Clarke, author of 'The Castaways' - Thriller writer talks writing spaces, getting it done early, and travelling to research.
  5. 5.
    Shane Dunphy, author of 'Stories from the Margins' - Inspirational Memoir and Crime author talks the perfect place to write, walking to work, and the responsibility of stories.
  6. 6.
    Abigail Dean, author of 'Girl A' - Instant Sunday Times Bestseller talks writing around full-time work, starting the day, and debut dreams.
  7. 7.
    Cherie Jones, author of 'How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House' - Debut novelist talks about waking up early, fitting everything in, and asking her characters questions.
  8. 8.
    Susie Donkin, author of 'Zeus is a Dick' - Comedy writer on reimagining ancient myths, learning from screenplays, and keeping keen to be lean.
  1. 9.
    Will Dean, author of 'The Last Thing to Burn' - Thriller writer talks about frantically thrashing out the words, paying justice to characters, and writing in the wilderness.
  2. 10.
    C.K. McDonnell, author of 'The Stranger Times' - Comedian and writer talks about how stand-up comedy made writing easier, about jokes getting in the way of the story, and why he annoys his characters.
  3. 11.
    Kate Mosse, author of 'The City of Tears' - Multi-million selling author talks thorough research, learning to write anywhere and building on the success of 'Labyrinth'
  4. 12.
    Jeff Lindsay, author of 'Fool Me Twice' - 'Dexter' creator talks intricate plotting, finding your vocation, and starting again after a huge series.
  5. 13.
    Emily Schultz, author of 'Little Threats' - Thriller writer talks creating a work space, thrashing ideas about, and switching genre.
  6. 14.
    Rosie Nixon, author of 'Just Between Friends' - Magazine editor talks escaping to write, getting to know characters, and beating deadlines.
  7. 15.
    Ross Sutherland, creator of 'The Golden House' - Poet, writer and podcaster explains how rules help creativity, why he loves the editing, and putting puzzles in podcasts.
  8. 16.
    Sibéal Pounder, author of 'Tinsel: The Girls Who Invented Christmas' - Children's author talks writing courses, finding the tone and writing a sense of magic.
  9. 17.
    CJ Cooke, author of 'The Nesting' - Gothic suspense author talks about getting the atmosphere right, stopping the editing knot, and writing to frighten.
  10. 18.
    Sareeta Domingo, author of 'If I Don't Have You' - Romantic fiction writer talks tricks of the genre, juggling full-time work with part-time passion, and getting ideas from dreams.
  11. 19.
    Mark Watson, author of 'Contacts' - Comedian talks about changing voices, writing on the road, and why he loves the bustle.
  12. 20.
    Sally Gardner, author of 'The Snow Song' - Multi award-winning bestseller talks about having a visual mind, knowing everything about your characters, and reluctant readers.
  13. 21.
    Gillian McAllister, author of 'How to Disappear' - Psychological thriller writer talks researching the unresearchable, mixing plotting and pantsing, and getting the first draft done quickly.
  14. 22.
    Alastair Humphreys, author of 'My Midsummer Morning' - Adventurer, Author and Podcaster talks about journalling, strange editing, and the freedom of storytelling.
  15. 23.
    Jennie Fields, author of 'Atomic Love' - Spy drama writer talks about bending genre, keeping track of tenses, and getting started late.
  16. 24.
    Isabelle Broom, author of 'Hello, Again' - Escapist romance writer talks about how ideas change, travelling for research, and why character is everything.
  17. 25.
    Matt Haig, author of 'The Midnight Library' - Bestselling writing talks searching for humanity, trusting the process, and getting the first draft done.
  18. 26.
    Trevor Wood, author of 'The Man on the Street' - Debut crime writer talks going back to school, playwriting, and perfect timing.
  19. 27.
    Jane Fallon, author of 'Queen Bee' - Bestselling writer talks about getting an early start, learning from television, and publishing her 10th novel.
  20. 28.
    Mara Timon, author of 'City of Spies' - Espionage thriller writer talks about putting the reader in your characters shoes, finding free time to write, and wartime secrets.
  21. 29.
    Calum McSwiggan, author of 'Eat, Gay, Love' - Memoir writer talks turning experience into plot, focused writing days, and pushing past the blank page
  22. 30.
    Erin Kinsley, author of 'Innocent' - Word targets, diagrams, charts and that book that needs to be told PLUS Ed Needham, editor of 'Strong Words' Magazine
  23. 31.
    Menna van Praag, author of 'The Sisters Grimm' - Magical realism author talks self-publishing, finding your voice, and why books are better shorter.
  24. 32.
    Amanda Jennings, writer of 'The Storm' - Bestselling author talks haunting thrillers, loneliness and isolation, and having all the notebooks
  25. 33.
    Jo Thomas, author of 'Escape to the French Farmhouse' - Romance writer talks food and family, retreats and incredible research trips.
  26. 34.
    Christopher Fowler, author of 'Oranges and Lemons' - Prolific writer talks crime novels, unplanned plotting and the bare bones draft.
  27. 35.
    Sophia Money-Coutts, writer of 'The Wish List' - Journalist and author talks escaping to write, rom-coms and getting to work early.
  28. 36.
    Sabine Durrant, author of 'Finders, Keepers' - Psychological thriller writer talks about pre-work rituals, when writing gets tough, and planning the day.
  29. 37.
    Roundtable - 'Uplit' authors Laura Jane Williams, Nicola Gill, Hannah Sunderland and Charlene Allcott talk about writing to answer questions, finding your reader, and playing with genre.
  30. 38.
    Melanie Blake, author of 'The Thunder Girls' - Entrepreneur talks ghost-writing, channeling characters and escaping to write.
  31. 39.
    Jasper Fforde, author of 'The Constant Rabbit' - Surrealist satire writer talks about narrative dares, the creative sandbox and finding the right words.
  32. 40.
    Peter James, author of 'Find Them Dead' - Prolific bestseller talks creating the perfect writing day, narrative charts and ruthless editing.
  33. 41.
    Chris Whitaker, author of 'We Begin at the End' - Crime writer talks American Noir, finding the plot through characters, and winning the 'New Blood Dagger Award'
  34. 42.
    Round Table - Crime writers Merilyn Davies, Rebecca Bradley and Neil Lancaster talk about the joy of editing, planning for a series, and creativity during lockdown.
  35. 43.
    Rachel Abbott, writer of 'The Murder Game' - Mega Kindle Bestseller talks about knowing her characters visually, the joys of editing, and making a business plan.
  36. 44.
    Anthony McGowan, author of 'Lark' - Carnegie Medal Winning writer discusses picking the next project, working in two spaces, and writing place over plot.
  37. 45.
    David Baldacci, author of 'Walk the Wire' - Prolific bestseller talks about being on the lookout for ideas, publishing two books a year, and picking characters for stories.
  38. 46.
    James Swallow, author of 'Rogue' - Thriller writer talks telling stories across genre, the ideal writing day, and writing for video games.
  39. 47.
    Adele Parks, author of 'Just My Luck' - Prolific writer talks having a strict routine, why she's always asking questions, and about her 20th book in 20 years.
  40. 48.
    Nicola Gill, author of 'The Neighbours' - Debut writer talks genre, crafting a plot around characters, and getting started early.
  41. 49.
    Neil Lancaster, author of 'Going Rogue' - Ex-cop talks about trusting the process, getting police stuff right, and making it thrilling.
  42. 50.
    Lorna Cook, author of 'The Forbidden Promise' - Historical mystery author talks dual-narrative, crammed work days, and writing what you want to read.

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