I am an English teacher at a secondary boys’ school in central London and a single mother to a 13 year old girl so am quite busy. I write from 5 am until 6.30 am every week day; the house is quiet and my head clear. My routine is: get up, make a cup of tea and return to bed with my mss. Although it is an early rise I do love it; it is a time of peace and ideas and in the drifting half light the words come easily. Moreover, that hour and a half is my own; no thoughts, no people, no technology, no nothing can trespass into my world. When I have finished and go to wake my daughter Harriet it is as if I have been up for hours, which I am sure, as she struggles to open her eyes, she finds very annoying; I try hard not to be too bright and breezy. At the weekends I write when I can, a couple of hours when Harriet is at a music class or with her friends. But if I don’t get to write then I am not too worried as Saturdays and Sundays are primarily for her. By Monday, however, I am pleased to return to the routine. Writing as soon as I am up keeps me connected with my book and characters all day.