Anna del Mar
In my alternative reality I’m trim, fit and athletic, with lovely curls that tumble down my back and a knack to handle tall, super sexy heels in all kinds of terrain. In that oh-so-pleasant reality, I’ve got Nora Robert’s prolific drive, Beyoncé’s cool dance moves and Angelina Jolie’s charitable soul, that is, in addition to her PR acumen. Oh, yeah. I run marathons too. Yep, that’s me all right, in my alternative reality.
In real life, things might be a tad different. I’m not trim. Or fit. Or athletic. I barely have time in the morning to brush my hair, let alone put on heels. Instead, I’m a debut romance author, a sleep-deprived, writing addict who is developing two new novels, editing two manuscripts and joggling four releases this year, including The Asset, the first novel of my Wounded Warrior series, the story of a woman desperate to escape her dangerous past and the Navy SEAL who would lay down his life to save her.
You won’t hear me complain. You see, I love writing. Yes, it’s hard work and yes, it requires lots of time, perseverance and dedication. My life is far from glamorous, and yet I feel like the luckiest girl on the planet. This year, I get to launch two separate series with Carina Press, including the Wounded Warrior series, a collection of fun, hot, smart romances about strong heroines struggling to find their place in the world and the brave, sexy, kickass military heroes who challenge their limits to protect the women they love.
And yet despite my love affair with writing and the joy of doing what I love, I find myself struggling some days, caught in a crazy whirlwind of activity, hardly able to catch my breath and wondering: Where did all the hours of the day go?
As a writer, one of the main daily challenges that I face is maintaining the balance between work and home life. The boundaries blur when you live where you work, when there isn’t a commute or a physical disconnect between the workplace and the living space. Sure, the absence of a commute is a huge occupational advantage, but it doesn’t help keep a healthy separation between work and home life when your commute is thirty seconds flat.
Time management is another daily challenge in a writer’s life. Deadlines are a standard part of my week. The business part of writing takes a huge chunk out of the day. Book launches require an inordinate amount of work and generate a whole slew of promos that are necessary to get the word out, but also have the potential to obliterate my writing time.
The same can be said for heeding the job’s demands but ignoring the body’s needs. Writing is a sedentary occupation. We all know what happens when the body doesn’t move. When time is of the essence, it’s easy to dismiss things like exercise, good nutrition and rest. It’s also easy to trick ourselves into the illusion that we’ll take care of all of that later.
Ultimately, we writers can’t ignore reality for the sake of fiction. Awareness is vital. We have to catch ourselves when we lose our work and home balance, when we mismanage our time and when we neglect ourselves and our bodies. Let’s face it: A healthy writer is a productive writer. My alternative reality, where I’m a fusion of Nora, Beyoncé and Angeline, might be a tad unrealistic and, by the way, running marathons is out, but with a little effort and lots of awareness, I can keep doing what I love best: Writing.
***Anna del Mar writes hot, smart romances that soothe the soul, challenge the mind, and satisfy the heart. Her stories focus on strong heroines struggling to find their place in the world and the brave, sexy, kickass, military heroes who defy the limits of their broken bodies to protect the women they love. She is the author of The Asset (Carina Press), the first novel of her Wounded Warrior series and three other novels scheduled for release during 2016.
A Georgetown University graduate, Anna enjoys traveling, hiking, skiing, and the sea. Writing is her addiction, her drug of choice, and what she wants to do all the time. The extraordinary men and women she met during her years as a Navy wife inspire the fabulous heroes and heroines at the center of her stories. When she stays put—which doesn’t happen very often—she lives in Florida with her indulgent husband and two very opinionated cats.