Author Journal 5th – 11th April 2021

Hi and welcome to this week’s Author Journal entry.

Review 29th March to 4th April 2021

My writing goals for last week were:

How Do I Think It Went?

Last week started great. On Monday, I exceeded my daily goal. I actually managed to triple it and gave myself a healthy headstart on the work.

Tuesday and Wednesday were devoted to site building/maintenance and blog writing—last week’s post and a post on my craft site. As those were my days off, we treated ourselves to two excellent movies: Bad Company and The Man in the Iron Mask.

Thursday, I was still going strong, getting a couple more pages done than planned, but other tasks needed my attention, preventing me from getting more done. But I was happy with the work.

Then Thursday night threw up a bit of an issue. For a few weeks now, my left ankle has been in agony—not enough to stop me running, stupidly—and that night, it decided to swell up like a balloon. I knew then that I would have to get it seen to, or there’d be no running, and that doesn’t sit well with Neen (my inner chimp who loves running).

Neen–the inner chimp in an arangutan costume

So, Friday morning was a weird mix of phone calls with 111 (Scottish NHS’s non-emergency line), as my local Drs was closed for the holiday weekend, taxis, getting poked and prodded, and shoehorning in another five pages of work.

On the ankle front, they think/hope it’s a bad sprain due to overcompensating for an injury I sustained on the other foot back in January. It’s a case of rest, and see how it is by Friday. Fingers crossed that I can get back to running soon after that.

Anyway, back on topic.

Saturday was by far one of my best days for productivity. Not only did I meet the goal for the week, but I also blasted through it and completed the “endings” section of the workbook (pages 29-36), which is an extra eight pages!

By the time Sunday morning rolled around, I was certain I was done for the week. I’d achieved more than I’d planned, and surely I could leave it at that… Nah. I was on a roll, and there was no way I was going to stop. So, per the workbook, I jumped to pages 69-73 because both my leads have character arcs*. With Working the Asset being a dual-protagonist story (two main characters), I had to do pages 69-73 twice—which I succeeded in completing before the end of my workday. 🥳

Overall, I’m overjoyed with the work I achieved last week.

*Okay, a quick one. Not all stories require character arcs. You know where the character starts the story one way, and over the course of the tale, they learn and change and come out at the other end the better for it—or worse if it’s a tragedy.

An excellent example of a story where there’s no real arc is Die Hard. The core of who John McLane is throughout the movie doesn’t really change. It’s still one of my favourite movies, and I don’t think a meaningful character arc would make it better.


Aside from medical issues, I didn’t really encounter any problems. Procrastination is getting easier to avoid the more I pay heed to what’s going on internally. Over time, more so the past year, I’ve learned the distraction squirrel code topics Neen uses to get me down a rabbit hole that isn’t work-related: crochet, bikes, politics…at the moment, it’s election time in Scotland, so it’s pretty much politics. So, whenever I get that distraction feeling, I give her a treat—fancy herbal and fruit tea—and force her bahookie back into the chair and get down to work.

Things to Take into This Week

Like last time, having Ludovico Einaudi playing while I work on DU#1 and having Neen’s favourite tea—after I’ve exhausted my daily coffee intake—seems to be working right now. I’ll continue to work this way for as long as it works.

This Week’s Goals

  • Complete pages 37-43 (story reinforcements)
  • Complete part two of the workbook, pages 44-52 (ensuring a rollercoaster story). For this part, I’ll need to do two sets as not only is DU#1 a dual-protagonist story it also has two plots of equal standing 50% romance, 50% suspense (actually, it’s more action-adventure than suspense).

This week’s set of goals are a wee bit more demanding than those of previous weeks, but I want to challenge myself to get more done in the time I have set aside for writing. If I don’t achieve them, I know I’ll get pretty bloody close, and that’s good enough in my book. But, I will strive to succeed and exceed—I’ve got enough coffee and fancy teas to do it. 🤪

The Schedule

MondayPages 37 – 40
TuesdayDay off/blog post (the one you’re reading right now)
WednesdayDay off/blog post for craft site (
ThursdayPages 41 – 43
FridayPages 44 – 49 (romance)
Saturdaypages 50-52 (romance); 44-46 (action-adventure)
Sundaypages 47-52 (action-adventure)

How About You?

How do you motivate yourself? How do you keep motivated?

Well, that’s the start of my day off calling—time for snacks and a movie. Thanks for stopping by, and take care.


Author: Susan T. Braithwaite

Royal Navy veteran from Scotland. My journey into writing started with a screenwriting certificate program at UCLA Ext. Since then, I've worked as a freelance content writer, erotica author, proofreader, professional beta reader, and content editor. I'm now working hard on my dream writing career: romantic suspense author. When I'm not writing, I can be found drinking too much coffee, obsessing over yarn, and planning world domination with my husband,, and our squirrel army.​

4 thoughts on “Author Journal 5th – 11th April 2021

  1. Chris Hall says:

    Yay, keep it up, Susan! My writing process may be different from yours but my tea consumption’s the same. I have chamomile in my cup for a centered afternoon, finishing off a chapter that should have been completed last weekend. However, I do have a compensatory third of a chapter ready to lead into, so I’m pretty much on track. I was distracted over the weekend trying (failing) to market a cheapie-download of one of my previous books. Hey-ho.
    Catchya next week and happy writing, Susan 🙂

    1. Hey, Chris! I’d say you’re doing great. It’s only Tuesday, you’ve got a third of a chapter, and the magical power of chamomile. You’ve got this in the bag. I don’t know how you’re getting it all done, and then there’s the never ending–thankless–task of marketing… I doff my imaginary tophat to you.
      On the marketing side, have you read any of Rayne Hall’s blue books? I’m not her biggest fan, but her book on Author Branding was a major help in showing me how to slow time & low key market–she has one on 200 tips for marketing your book (I can’t recall the name just now).

    2. P.S. Good luck on the chapter this afternoon!
      Oh, that book is called 200 Boosts for Indie Authors.

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