Saturday, July 2, 2011

Piers Anthony Blogs About Writing Schedules

One of my readers, Mark Geatches, suggested that I set up a FAQ section for the convenience of readers, which should also spare me the inconvenience of answering similar questions repeatedly. I pondered, and finally decided to do that here. He suggested some questions, and I'm adding more, and will add others as they come up. But be warned; I seem to be incapable of giving a simple answer to a simple question.

How do I write? Do I have a schedule, or wait for inspiration? 

I have a rough schedule. I can't work set hours each day because I have other things to do, like making meals, washing dishes, and grocery shopping, my wife's health restricting her, and I have a reasonably rigorous exercise program that also takes time. But I try to be at my desk from 9AM to 1 PM, and from 2:30PM to 5 PM, and from 6 PM to 7:30 PM. That is, about eight hours a day. I seldom get that much, and of course everything else in the world seems to have better things for me to do than write. Hell, this blog is an example; the time spent on it comes directly out of my novel writing time. So does fan mail. So does reading. So does making love to my wife. Life gets constantly in the way. I'm a writaholic; there is writing, and there is everything else. The two sometimes seem to compete with each other, like day and night. So I may average about four hours a day of actual writing, seven days a week. I write efficiently, and I get a lot done. I have mastered the Muse, being able to summon inspiration at need. So I don't wait for inspiration, I make it wait on me.


  1. If making love comes out of your writing time, no wonder you only get 4 hours a day! I applaud you! That aside, I have never heard an author express the sentiment "TheMuse of Inspiration is my bitch." Wonderful.

    I share your feeling about writing schedules. I set aside times & days for writing this summer, but water parks & games have the kids a-calling.

  2. I have read your books and newsletters since the mid-80s. You have always made time for your fans, communicating with as many as possible (and probably more often than should have been possible). Not everyone makes that effort. I -- and I am sure the rest of your fans -- appreciate it.

  3. Muses can be tamed; one of my favorite quotes on writing comes from Peter Beagle, who says, "If the Muse is late to work, you start without her."

  4. We need to get all your books available for purchase on the kindle.