Life v Writing

teddy bearWhat a busy fortnight I’ve had! First I got The Liebster Award then a couple of days later, Mumsnet awarded me, their coveted, Blog of The Day – for the second time! Aside from having excellent taste in blogs, Mumsnet are proving to be a great, supportive community.

Then, as well as the normal day-to-day jobs I do every week, I’ve also had; eldest child birthday, school christmas fair, business documents/proposals, made a sheep costume, prep for a Christmas party, Christmas cards and presents – wrapping and tree are next, I could go on… all these tasks conspire to push my writing down the list.

When you become a mother, the needs of your family
come first. You move further down the priority list
with every child you bear. This is a mother’s heart.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>(It’s my heart – Z)

A quick search on Wikipedia revealed: of the top 50 fiction writers 11 are women. I doubt Haruki Murakami or Stephen King have to interrupt their writing to wipe a child’s bottom after a poo or settle an argument over whether Bear can use the force or not.

A good day is when the children are at school and I’m in a real flow with my writing, bursting with productivity… unfortunately, I can’t escape then either. My dear husband will often interrupt (my short) working day with a call to say he will be home in 5 minutes, “Good news! I thought I’d come home and treat you to a nice lunch with me.” Then he gives me his sandwich order – yes really! He works very hard in a highly technical industry but slips into 1950’s man mode on crossing the magic portal/front door.

Yes, I can support my husband and be there for my children – fulfilling all my roles, but now I have another role. I am a writer. I know this because I can tick nearly all the boxes on this list:

IMAGE: Bear held by smallest child.

3 thoughts on “Life v Writing

  1. Unless you are fortunate enough to be in an office getting paid each week for writing, I think people tend to view writing as a hobby, and not something that requires planning and time like any other form of work. Sure, it’s fun when you’re on a roll, but in all honesty how many hours are spent “rolling along with inspiration” compared to the hours spent preparing, researching and formulating your thoughts and their direction. Sitting in front of a computer screen writing takes as much concentration as any other highly technical function. That’s why most people aren’t very good at it. It’s important to understand that commitment to your craft is as important and challenging as any of the other responsibilities you have. I’m fortunate enough now to get paid for what I do, but I spent many years exactly where you’re at, working full time and juggling meals, housework and the kids (my ex-wife worked a lot) while I tried to justify my writing on days off or in the evenings. Your husband sounds like a really great guy, truly, but sometimes even people who care about us have a hard time taking what we do seriously. Of course, in my case, being a humor columnist meant I already have a strike against me! :)

    • a) I am playing at it. If I wasn’t playing at it I’b be published by now.

      b) I am indulging my hobby. If put all my time into writing like it was my job everything else would slide. The household would run into chaos.

      Arrgh! can’t win. I think that’s why I was so paranoid about telling people I was a writer – I believed I had to have something to show for it to gain some sort of validation. Now? I’m a writer because I say I am!

      “commitment to your craft is as important and challenging as any of the other responsibilities you have.” Some times I really do feel like I have a fight on my hands.

      Blogger Daddownunder asked the question “Is blogging the new Therapy”. When you get great supportive and constructive comments back you get a group session… Thank God comments are free or I’d owe you a lot of money! :o)

      • Haha! No kidding! And you’re absolutely right. Ultimately, being a writer comes down to one thing, regardless of how much time you spend at it or what your life situation is, the only question is: Are you or aren’t you? In your case, definitely a “yes.” (No charge, btw :) )

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