Is there anything on your desk that you ‘must have in place’ before you start writing, or do you have a set routine? My grandfather was a farmer and as soon as he stepped outside the house in the morning he picked a fresh flower from the garden for his button-hole. I'm more casual.
Of interest to illustrators may be the character sketches that Phiz (Hablot Knight Browne) did in the development of Mr Dombey. This is taken from ‘Phiz – A Memoir’ written by Fred Kitton in 1882:
Dickens’ works were often first released in serial form. The Tale of Two Cities was published in ‘All The Year Round’ without illustrations, but also available in monthly parts with Phiz’s illustrations from Chapman and Hall.
In America it was serialised in 'Harper’s Weekly', with illustrations printed from woodblocks engraved by John McLenan. My copy of May 21, 1859 says the story was ‘Printed from early proof sheets for which Messers. Harper and Brothers pay the author FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS’. Big money in those days!
And I love the old advertisements in the magazines, too: