Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, Pets

In My ‘Spare’ Time

IMG_0547I’m about to embark on writing my seventh title for Harlequin Medical and in and around writing, I have to lead this whole other life. Apart from being a wife and a mother to four (16yrs, twins of 15yrs and a 12yr old) I also run a dog walking business and find time to do some hobbies.

I love dogs. Plain and simple. From mongrels to pedigrees, Great Danes to Teacup Yorkies, I love our four-legged friends. I have two of my own, Daisy (a 9 yr old Golden Retriever) and Mango (a 4 yr old Yorkie Terrier). And as I live on an island, I get to walk on the beach every day, come rain (which we get more than our fair share of) or shine (which we don’t get nearly enough of!)

I love walking every day. It blows away the cobwebs and of course, its perfect thinking time for when I’m stuck on a plot point, or can’t quite work out what to do next. I can talk out loud, asking myself ‘what if?’ questions and no-one bats an eyelid! Mainly because I just pretend I’m talking to the dogs, and, to be fair, I think I get away with it! We all talk to our animals, don’t we? Ask them questions? In that little sing-song voice?

And when I’m not writing, or dog-walking, or being a mum, or running the house, then I like to quilt. I currently have a few projects on the go at the moment – a quilt for my daughter (in progress below) and a hand-sewing project, which I can sit and do in the evenings, usually listening to an audiobook, or a podcast.

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And when I’m not doing ANY of that? I’m Konmari-ing my house! Has anyone heard of Marie Kondo? The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Tidying Up? Finding objects that Spark Joy?

So….not much to be getting on with!

How about you? When you’re not writing, or reading books, what’s going on in your life? What do you like to do in your ‘spare’ time? I’d love to know!

Louisa Heaton’s last release was One Life-Changing Night, a story of second chances, set in a busy London A&E.

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13 thoughts on “In My ‘Spare’ Time”

  1. Hi Louisa

    WOW you are busy I don’t think I could keep up I do love your stories though that is the best thing for me curling up with a good book that will make me smile, I have 2 grandchildren living with me in my care and they are 10 & 8 and yes a handful at times but I love them they both love to read and watch TV of course and then there is the rotten homework and we have a dog a Maremma named Casper he has such a great personality no cats at the moment but I would love one 🙂 love that quilt my best friend makes lots of quilts and crafty things I used to knit a lot but not these days. Great post looking forward to the release of your next book

    Have Fun
    Helen

  2. Thank you, Helen! Your grandchildren must keep you busy and I do love seeing the pictures of them you put on FB, enjoying life and always smiling, so you’re doing a great job! I’ve not heard of a Maremma breed, so will google that to see what they are like. My next book is out in August, so hopefully you’ll get to enjoy that, too! Have a great weekend xxx

  3. Play competitive badminton at least three nights per week … just finished scrapbooking photos, etc. from my daughter’s 2015 wedding so now must get back to my own albums I’m converting from magnetic albums (I’m only up to 1992, but, in all fairness, I received copies of 160 pics from the forties and fifties that got added later, so my pictures DO go a long way back – to the 1800s!) … walk one morning per week with friends … go to library and out for lunch with a girlfriend usually once a week (I already have Marie Kondo’s books on my library list! – I have enjoyed reading over 200 organizational books through the years) … dog-sit for friends … work part-time with self-employed typing/editing business … and am now enjoying my husband’s recent retirement otherwise. Of course, I HAVE managed to read over 250 books every year since 1973, so I must not be THAT busy, LOL!
    Thanks for sharing the love!

    1. Wow, Laney! That’s impressive. I have yet to sort my photos, so I’m very envious of the fact that you’ve made a start. I’m dreading doing that, because I think my (hoarding) husband would want to keep every duplication, every blurred pic, every finger in front of lens photo we have, etc, etc, whereas I only want to keep the good family ones. And 250 books per year? Wowzer! I’m impressed with myself if I manage 30 odd……

  4. I’m always amazed by the busy lives women have. I didn’t start writing until my kids were 14 and 16, and don’t have a clue how women with small children do it! I was also working as an R.N. back then, yet managed to get up an hour earlier each morning to put in a few words. Running a house and getting teenagers to sports activities etc, plus meeting with writing critique groups and going to meetings, kept me busy and tired. The thought of running a dog walking business AND quilting boggles my mind! Hats off to you. These days, with an empty nest, my husband and I take quick getaways as well as longer planned-on vacations. I walk my dog and go to the gym, but honestly, I still think of writing as my all-consuming “hobby” (sometimes it feels like it pays like a hobby) lol.
    May I ask which island you live on?

    1. Hi Lynne! I live on Hayling Island, which is just off the south coast of Hampshire. It’s very small and connected to the mainland by a bridge with two pretty harbours either side.
      I would love to take more vacations or even a quick getaway, but we haven’t managed to get away for the last five years, so I think we’re due one!

  5. Louisa – you are a wonder….I THINK about quilting a lot and all of the other gazillion things I’d love to do – but unlike you… I have only achieved loving dogs. Which I do rather unabashedly. xx A

    1. Oh believe me, Annie, there are lots of things I think about too! There’s so much stuff I want to do, see or achieve, but I haven’t yet. I keep saying I will and that makes me happy, so tell yourself you will make a quilt one day and just go cuddle your doggies, because that brings pleasure and as long as we’re happy, that’s what matters!

  6. Louisa,
    You do keep busy. I have a quilt waiting for me to hand stitch right now. I hope to get to it this year. I cross stitch. I have two stocking waiting on me, I also smock. I have to do a lot of that now because the grandkids will be too old for it before I know it. I also love to garden. Then there is reading. I so love to do that.

    1. Hi Susan! I used to cross stitch, but I was always too impatient to see progress and after an hours work, I’d be lucky to have done an inch square of picture. Quilting is faster results, at least for me. I wish I was better at gardening, but I’m useless! And yes, reading. I can never get enough of that!

  7. One thing I would like to try and learn now is crocheting! I have visions of making myself a 1960s style dress.

    1. Hi Avril! I like crocheting! I’ve been working on a Sophie’s Universe (Google it for images) in rainbow colours and am about half way through. I find it very relaxing and crochet grows quickly! Good luck learning. There are some great YouTube tutorials, which taught me everything. Crochet Crowd is good. And I’d love to see the dress when you get round to it!

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