What is your morning routine?
My first stop is the coffee pot even though I don’t drink coffee. I might be the only writer in the world who doesn’t, and that might explain why I am such a painfully slow writer, but I can’t stand the stuff. I’m apparently really great at making it for my girlfriend though.
If I’ve been a good boy and woken up with my first alarm, I’ll eat some cereal (Sweetened Wheatfuls from Mom’s Best) and spend time with whatever YA novel I’m currently reading before I wake up Alex for her coffee.
But if I’ve been bad and hit snooze a couple of times, I skip breakfast and go straight to walking the anxious dogs. We have three so this can take a while. We also have a cat who weighs about fifteen pounds so scooping his box can also take a while.
Once everyone’s poop has been managed and Alex is enjoying her coffee, I take my shower. My shower is my coffee. My shower is my meditation. I’m not really a person until I’ve had my shower. I am embarrassed to admit how long my shower is because it is not environmentally friendly. I lie down for my shower. This is where I do most of the daydreaming it takes to write fiction. I think it goes back to being a kid and playing elaborate games with my bath toys. I just find that relaxing under hot rain lights up the areas of my brain dedicated to make-believe.
How long have you stuck with this routine so far?
This is pretty much how my mornings have unfolded since I went back to college in January 2012. I don’t really remember what it was like before that when I had a regular job except that I was miserable and grumpy because I didn’t get to enjoy my shower.
What time do you go to sleep?
Too late! It drives Alex crazy, and we’re trying to correct it, but I’m such a natural night owl. I hate writing while the sun is still up.
Do you use an alarm to wake you up in the morning, and if so do you ever hit the snooze button?
If I didn’t use an alarm, I would never wake up before noon. Maybe not even then. I might just sleep forever.
I use the alarm on my phone, and I usually hit snooze two or three times. All too often, I accidentally turn it off completely. I am not a morning person. I am a morning monster.
Do you answer email first thing in the morning or leave it until later in the day?
I’m not a high-volume inbox kind of guy, but I can assure you that if I were, I would let them pile up until the last possible minute.
How soon do you check your phone in the morning?
I’m not a high-volume call or text kind of guy either, but I check my Facebook and Instagram immediately. It distracts me from climbing back into bed right away. With enough notifications to look at, I might not even snooze! (Hint, hint, follow me on Instagram and like stuff while I sleep so I can be a more productive human.)
What are your most important tasks in the morning?
I would say my number one priority is making sure our youngest dog gets outside before she poops in her crate and tries to hide it by eating it.
On days you’re not settled in your home, are you able to adapt your routine to fit in with a different environment?
I’m not a high-volume travel kind of guy either so I am in my own home approximately 355 days of the years.
The other ten are when we visit Alex’s family in Texas, and then everything goes to hell. I have to shower like a normal person rather than an eccentric writer. It’s awful.
What do you do if you fail to follow your morning routine, and how does this influence the rest of your day?
I turn into a werewolf if I don’t get my weird shower. This influences everyone around me very badly.