Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Dead Wrong Blog Tour: A Day in the Life of Curtis Jobling!

Will and Dougie are still adjusting to the slight change in their friendship dynamic. . . Will's dead but Dougie can still see him. Weird, admittedly, but there are some positives: solving a murder mystery (with the help of former living best friend), becoming a local hero and getting the girl of your dreams are pretty big perks. But what happens when the girl is Will's crush too? The first (and last!) girl he ever kissed? And why has Dougie's dad been acting all weird ever since Will died? Just as things are beginning to go right for Will, it seems he couldn't have been more wrong. . .
Haunt: Dead Wrong is the much-anticipated sequel to Haunt: Dead Scared, which was one of 2014's most fun reads. Dead Wrong was published in the UK on February 26th, by Simon and Schuster, and promised to be another great read from Mr. Jobling. Read on to find out what a typical day of his life looks like...


Haunt: Dead Wrong was written over a number of months in 2014. I had writing days, when I was able to write uninterrupted. I had non-writey days, where any number of distractions would pull me away from my work. But this is the breakdown for a regular weekday in the life of this particular crayonboy. WARNING: GLAMOUR FOLLOWS!
6:30am. Alarm goes off. Hit snooze. Repeat for next half hour.
7:00am. Reluctantly rise from pit. Children need letting out of their kennels and feeding. Apparently there's this thing called 'school' they have to attend. Meh.
8:20am. Walk to school.
8:25am. Return home because one of three daughters has forgotten something for school.
8:30am. Walk to school again.
8:50am. Home again. Theoretically I can start work writing now.
9:00am. Make brew. Forage for biscuits.
9:10am. Answer emails. This can take a while. There's usually a number of editorial correspondences with Puffin, Simon and Schuster and Egmont that need my attention. Then there are schools firming up details of impending visits, or making enquiries into my author events. And of course there is the occasional fan mail too. Fortunately, my wife Emma fields these enquiries as I'm often not free to answer every one. The best place for fans to get in touch is usually via social media, either on Twitter or on the official Facebook page for Wereworld. That in itself is an important piece of the author puzzle, certainly when writing for younger and teen audiences - they're all online, and this is the best way of staying in touch with and reaching your core readership.
10am. Make another brew. Regret having not bought more biscuits.
10:10am. Stare at screen, hoping inspiration might creep up on me and bite my butt.
10:20am. Check in on my favourite websites, most of which are related to Warrington Wolves Rugby League Club. I'm an ardent fan, as well as a patron of their Charitable Foundation. In this role I visit schools across the borough with my Children's University hat on, providing (hopefully) inspiring talks and workshops.
10:30am. And I'm writing! I can usually get an hour or two under the belt in the morning before I break for. . .
12:30pm. . . lunch! This can be a buttie and a bag of crisps or, if we're feeling naughty, Emma and I sneak out for a bite to eat. The latter is fatal if there's a deadline to hit, as one can be sure this means we'll time our return for the school run. Far better to crack on with. . .
1:00pm. . . writing! I can sneak a couple of more hours in until it's time to head out of the door again.
3:00pm. Walk to school. Pick up children. Stare in shock at how grubby my children are. Complain to teaching staff. Realise with some degree of horror they were in that condition when I dropped them off in the morning. Return home suitably shamefaced.
3:30pm. The dad hat is usually on now, as the children are encouraged to get homework out of the way with. We throw some tea/dinner (delete as applicable) down their necks and are frequently then forced to take them to after school activities and clubs: tennis, swimming, gymnastics and Greco-Roman wrestling. I lie - one of those isn't true. Gymnastics will never find a home in Warrington.
7:00pm. Bedtime, for the small folk at least.
7:05pm. Head upstairs to remind smallest child that if she doesn't go back to bed, I may be less cheery upon my return visit.
7:15pm. Return upstairs in less cheery mood. This is my final child-related traipse upstairs for the night. I don't expect to hear from the monst- sorry, youngest, until the morning.
7:30pm. Dinner with Emma. Anyone who follows my tweets will know full well that ours is the house that is made out of curry. We tend to make our own dished from scratch (thanks, Madhur Jaffrey!), although we do have our local Indian restaurant on speed-dial should we find ourselves in an emergency curry situation. These are surprisingly common.
8:00pm. Am writing. This can continue until around 10:00 or 11:00, depending upon whether The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones is on telly. These are the two shows I watch habitually, being a lover of them in their original written (and illustrated) incarnations. Of course, if I'm hitting a deadline, this could be even later.
11:00-12:00 Up the wooden stairs to Bedfordshire. Night all!
I realise that day looks pretty piecemeal, but that's how it has to be. We work to military-like precision - we have to, as invariably in a busy family home somebody has to be somewhere doing something at any particular time. Of course, this is a day when I'm at home writing. There are frequently occasions where I'm out all day travelling to and from school events. I like to take the train when this happens, so I can get some writing time under my belt. Those are stolen but productive hours out of an otherwise unproductive day, from a creative writing point of view.
So that's me. Not very exciting, is it? Nowhere near as many publishing parties, dancing girls or helicopter chases as one might've expected, eh? Still, that's my life, and I have to say I wouldn't swap it for another.


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