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June 7, 2012

20 Questions: A Day in the Life of... Conor Grennan

Posted by tbrmaureen

Conor Grennan is the author of LITTLE PRINCES, and founder of Next Generation Nepal, an organization dedicated to reconnecting trafficked children with their families and combating the root causes of child trafficking in rural villages in Nepal. He recently sat down to answer our 20 Questions survey, sharing what it's like to be him for a day.

What time did you wake up?
I was up at 7 a.m., when my 3 year old son came in and threw his stuffed monkey at my head.

Did you make your bed?
I sort of pull up the cover to make it look good.

Where did you spend your day?
Most of my day was spent in the Wilton Library in Connecticut. It’s a bit further than my local library, but the light there is so good, it’s a great place to work.

Who did you see/call?
I met a buddy for lunch --- if I don’t do that, sometimes I don’t talk to anyone all day (until I get home to my family), and I really like to talk.

How many times did you check Facebook or Twitter?
I’m pretty good about keeping it under control, but I have to turn it off entirely. I glanced at Facebook in the morning and the early afternoon, then again in the evening. But if it’s open on my computer, I’m there a lot more.

Did you respond to reader mail?
I always try to write back to one or two a day. People send such amazing messages, I just love it. If I have a crazy work load, sometimes I don’t get a chance to respond to many, but getting them means a lot to me.

What did you do on a book project today?
Today was all about editing a prologue for a new project. You want to start off strong, and give a sense of where a book is going, enough to entice, not enough to give away. It has to be short, strong, and engaging. I don’t think I’ve nailed it yet.

How did you procrastinate?
I read the news. It makes me feel like I’m doing something productive, but really, why would I need to know any more about some controversial new building going up in Des Moines?

What did you accomplish?
It didn’t feel like much --- I got distracted a lot by the organization I oversee, Next Generation Nepal --- lots of emails to answer there. In writing, I think I made progress, but it was hard to see it on the page.

What did you want to accomplish?
I wanted to write 2,000 words. When I’m on a roll I can, and I feel awesome afterwards.

What was the weather?
Beautiful today! For the first time I didn’t bring an extra fleece with me.

What were you wearing?
I have my standard uniform --- jeans and a button down, with a fleece Patagonia vest.

What did you read?
I just started DIVERGENT by Veronica Roth, after hearing so much about it. So good.

Did you listen to music, if so what?
I don’t listen to a lot of music. In the car, I’m usually trying to work through new ideas in my head. Unless you count the fact that I listen to white noise on my iPhone – I like to drown out all other sound when I write. Helps me concentrate.

What was the healthiest and unhealthiest thing you ate?
I ate a bite of my wife’s oatmeal this morning --- but I'm not a big fan. I’m a sucker for Popchips, so as usual I scarfed those down.

Did you exercise?
Nope. I wish I did, but that doesn’t make it so.

What was the best part of the day?
Getting home to my wife and kids. Cliché, I know, but trust me, little kids are a constant source of entertainment. It’s amazing how much you can miss them.

What was the worst part of the day?
Probably when the 20th attempt at a paragraph still wasn’t working, and seemed to be only getting worse. It feels in those moments like you’ll never be able to write again.

Any surprises today?
A wild turkey crossed the road in front of me. I love that about Connecticut --- even though we’re moving to L. A. --- I’ll miss that.

What device did you use to answer these questions?
My ever-present HP laptop.