I like this quote from mystery author Elizabeth George, whose birthday is today:
The only way to succeed at the writing life is to be able to live according to a schedule that accommodates time to write.Today Writer's Almanac included a detail of her daily writing routine. While obviously this would never work for those of us with full-time non-authorish jobs (or with kids), I like the idea of her dedication to keeping a specific schedule rather than writing "when the mood strikes." She's written a ton of Thomas Lynley mysteries and WA points out that she's considered by many as the greatest living mystery writer.
She writes five days a week when she's working on the first draft, and when she's on subsequent drafts, she writes seven days a week. She always gets up at 6 a.m., she says, feeds the dog and takes vitamins and works out on an Exercycle for 30 minutes while reading a meditation book, then inspirational book, then a novel. And she lifts weights for 35 mintues while watching The Today Show. She meditates for 10 minutes, sits down at her desk, reads great literature for about 15 minutes - something along the lines of Jane Austen - and writes a paragraph or page or two in a journal. And then she begins to work on the novel she's writing. She keeps a plot outline, and every day she writes a minimum of five pages, even if she's on the road for book tours or on vacation.