Elizabeth von Arnim

Writer’s corner

My work habits have featured in the weekly books newsletter of The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald.

Each week we ask an author about their writing rituals. This week: Joyce Morgan, author of The Countess from Kirribilli

If I’m at my desk by the crack of 10am, I’m happy. I have never been an early riser. What I grandly call my study is the spare bedroom, which I share with my bicycle. I follow a similar working day writing non-fiction as I did as a daily journalist. I love a deadline. So, I set myself a word count each day.

I write in silence and edit to music. But only to instrumental or orchestral music, otherwise I’m distracted by the lyrics. I am also inclined to procrastinate.

I’ve written my latest book amid pandemic lockdowns that I’ve barely noticed. Every day feels like a self-isolation day when I’m writing a book. On a good day, I lose track of time. But my Border Collie never does. Lochy pushes his wet nose around my study door on the dot of 5.30pm.

By joycemorganauthor

Joyce Morgan is the author of three biographies, two about cultural figures and one, an object biography, about the world's oldest printed book.