A Wicked Welcome to Tonya Kappes! & Giveaway!

I am delighted to welcome Tonya to the blog today! Her career is amazing to watch, and I admire how she juggles several series at once. In today’s post she gives us some insight into how she makes it all work.

If you know me at all, you know that for the past fifteen years, before I had written a single word…let alone a book…I’ve been super open with my readers. Wait. You just said before you even wrote a single word. 

Yep! You read that right. 

I wanted to write a book. I started a blog and talked about it. The entire time gaining followers. Which just so happened to turn into readers! 

Then came Facebook! We all started to gather there on a private Kappes Cozy Krew page. As we say in the south, “it was all she wrote!”

Why am I telling you this? Not only is the Cozy Krew page still going strong, I feel like I can go to them about anything. We don’t only discuss all things books, we also talk about our life that includes all amazing good and all the awful ugly. We are our little tribe of family over there. When I was asked to be a guest here on Wicked Authors, of course without hesitation I went to my Cozy Krew. I wasn’t sure what to write about and I knew they’d know. So I asked them…what would you like to read in my guest blog. 

Kimberly K O’Hara Nunez, asked, “I’d like to know the day-to-day schedule you keep in order to keep up with your publishing calendar. How do you deal with writers block? Have you ever fallen out of love with a character/characters when you are contracted for several more books featuring them? How do you deal with that?”

Her question got my juices going and that’s the topic I’m going to talk y’all’s ear off today about!

My day to day schedule is pretty much the same Monday through Friday. I treat my writing career as a full time job. The only difference is how I work from home instead of going to an office. But the process is the same. 

I get out of bed by six a.m. It use to be around five a.m. while I was raising four boys. Now they are all adults and no longer live at home, so six a.m. is a good time for me. I have two cups of coffee while I do some spiritual/soul work. By that time, it’s around seven a.m. and I get my walking shoes on and walk a couple of miles. Most days I’m just enjoying nature while other days I’m listening to a podcast or two. 

After my walk, I shower and get ready for work. That might include another cup of coffee and some breakfast, other days it’s just more coffee. I’m always at my desk by nine a.m. All of my friends and family know I do not keep my phone on me or if it is, I won’t answer it until the writing portion of my day is over. 

When I sit down to my desk, I immediately open my current manuscript. I’ll also open youtube on my Ipad. I have a few authors I like to follow who do word sprint videos. These videos are authors who video tape themselves doing live write in with other authors. They spend a lot of time talking in between a chunk of time, like twenty minutes, where they just tape themselves until the timer goes off. 

I will do two hour sprints a day and can write three thousand words a day. That puts my time around eleven a.m. 

After the sprints and I’m satisfied with the amount of words I’ve written, I will move on to the business side of my job. I will check my email and zero them out. I will check and record my book sales or check to make sure my planned book sales are live. Every day is a theme or what is known as block schedule. Monday is always newsletter while Tuesday is social media, Wednesday is blogs, Thursday is reader birthday post cards,  etc…this means that on Monday, I only work on my newsletter. If any of you get my newsletter, you know I put a lot of work into it. It’s not a typical newsletter. 

When I say Tuesday is social media, it means that I know exactly every post and the time it will hit the social media sites. Remember, this is a business and it has to be run as such if you’re going to be successful. Everything I do, I ask myself, “how will this help my reader?” 

Nothing I do is without a lot of thought and process. 

I always eat lunch at one p.m. because I love Days of our Lives and I watch it. I also will return calls during this time. In the afternoon, I schedule any sort of appointments or friend time. If I’ve got nothing scheduled, I will work on the production part of the book, which a totally different part of the business. I check ads, create ads, touch base with editors, review team, etc.

At four p.m. I check email again, zero it out and turn off the computer. Eddy gets home about that time, so we cook supper and spend some time together before I go to my nightly Jazzercise class. I’m in bed by ten p.m. 

I do this five days a week with little to no straying. This is my job and how we pay our bills and I treat it as such. 

I have to say that I don’t believe in writer’s block. Don’t gasp or roll y’all’s eyes! I don’t. If during the time I’m writing and I stop dead in my tracks, I will jump up and take another quick walk to get out of my head, which gets my juices flowing and I figure out what the next written words will be. Or if I get stuck, it means that particular scene isn’t working and it needs to be reevaluated.

As for falling out of love with my characters with long contracts…you know, I haven’t. Currently I’m writing four different series. I’m fortunate enough to be able to switch between these characters so I don’t get sick of writing them. My characters have so much personality, I really do truly enjoy visiting with them every single time. 

My question to y’all readers: Have you ever had to work from home? Did you keep a schedule? Or could you work from home?

Commenters on the blog will be eligible for this great giveaway!

Tonya has written over 55 novels, all of which have graced numerous bestseller lists including USA Today. Best known for stories charged with emotion and humor, and filled with flawed characters, her novels have garnered reader praise and glowing critical reviews. She lives with her husband, a very spoiled rescue cat and grew up in the small southern Kentucky town of Nicholasville. Now that her four boys are grown boys, Tonya writes fulltime.

Visit Tonya:
Facebook at Author Tonya Kappes

Kappes Krew Street Team





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58 Thoughts

  1. Hi, Tonya! Yes, I work from home and yes, a schedule is definitely required. Otherwise I’ll spend the entire day reading!

  2. I don’t think I am self-disciplined enough to work from home. Luckily, I am retired and only work part-time (2 days a week). Tonya, I love your books and really appreciate the time and effort you put into making things fun for your readers.

    1. Hahaa! Definitely need self discipline. Now that my kids are out of the house, it’s much easier.

  3. I think any job, regardless of how big or small, should be treated as that – a job. When I tell folks I’m a homemaker, they say of you don’t have a job. YES I do! I consider it a very important job and one that not everyone is cut of for.

    I have to schedule my time to see that all gets done. At least what needs to be done now because we know that most housework never gets completely done. Laundry is never ending and if you eat you must prepare, execute and clean up only to have to do it all over again.

    I’m my own manager. I manage our money, our time, the kitchen, the household needs and wants. In other words I am everything from bottle washer to chef.

    Yes I can, by working for myself, have some flexibility, but if you slack or neglect today then tomorrow will be all the
    busier – that pile of laundry will be two washers instead of one and the cleaning you put off will take you longer to do another day. So as a manager, you must decide if the slacking is worth the extra work, the long hours to work tomorrow to make up for it.

    I’m very fortunate to have a co-manager now since hubby’s retired AND he doesn’t mind doing household chores. Many hands make the work light meaning get ‘r’ done and then we can both play. 🙂

    Love your books and can’t get enough of them! Keep dong what your doing because you’re doing it right.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  4. I only had to do remote computer checks from home a couple of nights a week so it wasn’t hard to keep to a schedule. The rest of the time I worked at the office.

  5. I don’t technically work from home. I review mystery novels for several on-line sites – so I read anywhere and write at home – whenever. No schedule. No routing. Winging it – a pantser all the way! Thanks for the chance to win.

  6. You are extremely organized. No wonder you are able to put out so many books. My hat is definitely off to you.

    1. Thanks Mark. I’m just so sorry you didn’t like Beaches, Bungalows & Burglaries. Hugs!

    1. Well.. what works for me doesn’t work for everyone. You do you 🙂

  7. I’d sure like to be able to work from home on the days the driveway has snow piled higher than my car. I think at first I’d get distracted with other things, but once I got that out of the way I might be okay.

  8. Thanks for the look into Tonya’s daily life. Love her series especially the Campers series

  9. Thanks for the fantastic interview! I really enjoyed learning more about how her day works out.

  10. I have worked at home for many years – I find that keeping my daily schedule constant works well for me and I can accomplish what I need to. I enjoyed reading how you have your schedule set up.

    1. Oh my stars…you should see my daily calendar! I keep a paper one….I’m so type A….EECK!!!!

  11. I don’t think I could ever work from home. I’m not disciplined enough. So glad you can, Tanya, because we all benefit from it!

  12. Tonya, thanks so much for sharing how your process converts to a daily schedule. I have to admit, I have often wondered how you managed to do all that you do!! I could never work from home, as I am too easily distracted-SQUIRREL!, so it’s a good thing that I was an elementary school librarain, who had to be on schedule at all times!! Now that I’m retired, schedules are a thing of the past.

  13. I worked at home for many years—and enjoyed being able to work in my nightgown or torn jeans, but missed chatting with others in an office.

  14. I love all your books. I’ve never had the opportunity to work from home. Would love it though. Unfortunately, my job isn’t the kind you can work from home with so I’d have to change jobs.

  15. Thanks for sharing your daily schedule and your writing routine. Love your books

  16. I don’t work from home, but I do keep a daily schedule because I have so much going on it keeps me organized and my family and friends are all good by the end of the day.

  17. I do a lot of my paperwork and billing for my private practice at home, but there are so many distractions that I don’t think I could work full time at home. I wish I could!

  18. My Job from home was homeschooling my son who has Asperger’s while we were living overseas for my husband’s job. With only 2 years remaining in his High School years, we finished it after returning to the states. It was very important to keep him on schedule and still be flexible. His final testing showed him in the highest percentile, so we did well. Now, I am back to working out in the world and reading all of your many series. And loving them!!

  19. wait, you zero out your email…daily??? You are a magician! If I didn’t look up to your before…

  20. I sort of work from home. As an adjunct English Professor, I have to do all my writing, planning, communication, problem-solving, and grading at home. I do the same as you. I set a schedule every day for each task. I try to make it so I have evenings and weekends open for family and friends. During peak grading times, I have to infringe on both. But, I love my job. So, it’s absolutely worth it.

  21. I don’t work from home but I wish I could! I don’t think I’d having much trouble keeping to a schedule.

  22. I only work from home one day a week and then I travel my stores the other 4 days. The day I am home I basically set myself a to-do list to ensure I get to all my office work I need to. It’s so easy to be sidetracked! My husband will stop home for lunch and won’t have moved for hours!!

  23. I have worked from home and had to keep a schedule because I was also taking care of my three children. Thank you for the dedication to put into your wonderful books, I love them. Nancy

  24. I am currently on disability and during this time, I learned that I am not disciplined enough to work from home. I get too easily distracted. Luckily, I will be getting back into the work force by working in friend’s office. I am much better at working outside the home.☘️

  25. My job is being a stay at home mom to 3, soon to be 4 kids. Our kids range in age from 4 to newborn. I try to have a schedule but there are so many days that we vary from it. When I’m not taking care of all of my kids, I do have to have a schedule. I have bipolar disorder 1 and 2 so a schedule makes my life alot less stressful and alot closer to normal. I can definitely tell when I have disrupted my schedule and everyone else around me can as well. But I’m grateful for my schedule AND the chaos that comes with being a mom of 4.

  26. I don’t think I could work from home as I get easily distracted. I am retired, so I have more time to read now, yay! I love your books, and enjoy being a part of the Cozy Mystery Reader Krew.

  27. I don’t think I could work from home as I get easily distracted. I am retired, so I have more time to read now, yay! I love your books, and enjoy being a part of the Cozy Mystery Reader Krew.

  28. I have worked from home, kept to an approximate schedule, but was glad that I could change it at a moments notice if needed.

  29. Wow! I love the dedication and schedule you created. I could work from home if I did just that and made a schedule. Without a schedule, that would make it a lot harder to get the work done for me.

  30. I love your discipline. I am enjoying being on your review team I love your books. I have never worked from home I don’t know if I am disciplined enough to do that. I had to quit my job for medical reasons so I am home all day. Thanks for the chance.


  31. I’m retired now but never worked from home. I just don’t have the personality for it. That said, I did occasionally put in extra hours at home to meet a deadline.

  32. I’m retired now but didn’t have the kinds of jobs that made working from home a possibility. I also don’t think I have the mindset to be successful that way. I did however, work extra hours at home to meet deadlines.

  33. Does babysitting count I did that at home for years. Thank you for sharing your schedule. I love your camping books.

  34. I never worked from home but I homeschooled my 4 kids,it took 20 years and we had to keep a schedule to get their work done. I can’t imagine your schedule but admire it

  35. I never worked from home. I don’t think I have the self-discipline that would be necessary to do so.

  36. I never worked from home and don’t think I would have gotten anything done if I ever did. Now we are retired and like to travel when we get the chance,

  37. Hubby works from home occasionally and does a great job of sticking to the computer and only doing household things on breaks. I would have the best intentions, but would probably end up with my nose in a book all day!

  38. You are amazing!! I quit my job 3 yrs ago to help with the kiddos at home. I have been thinking that I need to go back to work, but maybe from home would be better. It’s been a rough road since quitting my job, I had always worked and felt lost, just now coming back to myself…finally. I use a paper calendar, just like my grandma did. I keep them all so I can look back at when someone had surgery or when we bought our car…etc. It’s like a Reader’s Digest journal, without the fear it will crash, lol. I don’t know how you have so much energy! Maybe all of those boys made it a necessity. =) Thanks to you, I just reorganized my day to fit in more! Give rubs to Ro and thank you for sharing with us.

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