Many, perhaps most writers today, pursue occupations and/or passions in addition to writing. For example, I'm a shrink. I have gotten myself off unwanted juries with ease at the voir dire stage by answering the question "What do you do?" honestly : "I'm an online therapist and a mystery writer." To writers: What other hat(s) do you wear? And in what ways do you (or don't you) integrate these pursuits with your mysteries?

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I publish two newspapers by day. Also, pretty avid stamp collector and a judo black belt. Used to compete, but darn it, that hurts these days.

Though not "major characters" both my (unpublished :-( ) novels do feature newspaper staff in fairly important roles.

Like Joyce, I was called for jury duty and was thrown out the second they found out I worked for a newspaper.
I used to be an English prof. but took early retirement and now I only write. Bliss!
I'm a pensions consultant. Write what I know? An exciting crime fiction novel about an actuary who can't find his mortality tables - anyone fancy reading that? :o)
I think "Mortality Tables" would make a kick-ass title. And I can see an actuary uncovering something deep and dark, hidden in the numbers.... but I also think the Number 62 bus holds endless possibilities.
Hold me back! Is it accompanied by a student-reader guide? (Only beause my undergraduate degree is in parks and recreation management and I saw my grade point plummet when we got to probability).
Barrbara - you're right about the title - it would just be a really really dull book. The number 62 definitely has more possibilities. Karyn - i feel your pain :o)
I am a network admin for a small company. I own my own business too, a video production/photography studio, and then there's the writing. ha.
Hi Liz,
I'm a master gardener. I don't do it professionally, just a lot of volunteer gardening and countless hours in my own garden. One winter when I couldn't get in the garden I wrote a mystery , about a -gasp!-gardener who uncovers a mystery.
I used to work on film sets in Toronto, then when my wife and I had kids she went back to work (she's an engineer, has a job with benefits, I was freelance) and I stayed home. The plan was that when my kids were in school full-time, I'd go back to work. Instead I somehow sold a couple of novels and now my kids are in grade two and four and I'm still home writing.

I have to say, it's a lot more stressful that I imagined it would be. I used to always have the excuse that I'd get more writing done - and it would be better - if only I had more time. Now I have plenty of time and I contstantly feel I'm not getting enough done and it's not good enough.
Well, since this happened to me, too, I guess it's normal. When I was working, writing time was time off. Now I have to justify what I do.
I'm a reporter by day, and even though that's writing too, it's a lot different from fiction writing.

I think it's good to have something else going on aside from writing mysteries. Job or hobby. It keeps you challenged.
I'm a prosecuting lawyer here in England. I go to court, assist the police, and do everything that a prosecuting lawyer is expected to do. It helps with the writing, as I am comfortable with the subject matter; it is within my experience. Also, whatever grisly thing I can think of, I reckon I can find a case in my area pretty quickly that is worse. It makes me realise how wide the boundaries are.

Bizarrely, I would be allowed to sit on a jury, although only on a case involving a different prosecuting authority (eg, I work for the Crown Prosecution Service, the criminal prosecutors, but I would be allowed to be a juror in a case brought by the Trading Standards Office).


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