Ron and Mary are discussing below how we structure our writing days.

When I first tried to write a book my husband challenged me to write five pages a day. Every time I wrote five pages, I’d get two Reece’s Peanut Butter Cups—the small kind, which I think have a more appealing chocolate-to-peanut-buttery-goo ratio. I wrote five pages pretty much every day. There’s nothing like a little motivation.

I found when I did this my mind was always working on the book in some level, thinking about what would come next. And then as I got toward the end of the book I’d write whole chapters in a day just to see what came next. I seemed to always be living half in the world of my book.

Then I had a baby and my writing time suddenly became conscribed by the hours we had child care, not to mention the piles of laundry and doctor’s appointments and desperately needed midday naps and entire days lost to things like little tyke getting sent home from school for getting handsy with the other toddlers. It’s hard to fit in any page goal, what with all the time I have to spend procrastinating.

Right now, I am trying to begin a new book and can’t seem to find the voice. A day of stopping and starting led to little progress. But when I came home from picking up the tyke at school my cat had, helpfully, added eight pages of punctuation marks to the computer document. Do you think she likes Reece’s?