My previous post detailed what I put up with from my wonderful family in order to get words onto a page. Now, let’s go into what my family puts up with from me.
* “I’ll be there in ten minutes sweetie” is honestly what I mean when I say it, but then I discover just one last thing that needs to be fixed, a word that could be replaced with something more meaningful, a chapter title that needs a little tweaking…and before I know it two hours have gone by.
*At any given moment there are a minimum of three sticky notes on the computer monitor, and usually the number is more like seven. Good for me, but super annoying to the lovely hubby. (Kids like them too…as in they like to pull them off and make a run for it)
*A bathroom filled with half-read books, articles on the craft of writing, and various drafts awaiting edits. (You ask me where a mother of four year old twins can get a moment of privacy and I’ll tell you the best bet is in the bathroom…for a while. Soon the family will catch on that I’m actually working in there.)
*I consider any clean paper lying around the house to be fair game for writing on. I am one of those people who thinks about my edits during the day, even when I don’t have the draft printed out in front of me for review. As a result, sometimes I have an idea and if I don’t get it down in writing fast I’ll lose it. So, after a mad scramble I find whatever I can and go for it. Just last night in fact I used my daughter’s paper she was coloring on, and wouldn’t you know it…it was the first thing she asked for the next morning! As they’ve gotten older (they are four) I find I can’t use their stuff as much anymore since their memory is starting to get better
*During Bi-monthly writing critique group meetings, about two hours each evening, large blocks of time each weekend my family is on their own. Fortunately I have the BEST AND MOST SUPPORTIVE HUSBAND EVER and he makes it possible for me to be “away” during these times. (He does however have a large range of plans on what to do with all the millions I make from my hugely successful books. I can’t bear to tell him what an average advance is for a first time novelist is…I just grin and play along)
*And finally, Bessie. Dear, sweet, (ok, she’s actually very temperamental and totally grouchy but don’t tell her I said that or she’ll shut off again while I’m in the middle of a brilliant moment of prose) Bessie is my computer. My VERY OLD computer with no tolerance whatsoever for anything new so I have to watch my dear hubby like a hawk to make sure he doesn’t, you know, try to download ANYTHING, visit a site like YouTube, or give it another command while she’s chugging away at the first command. When I turn her on it takes over five minutes for her to warm up, pull up all the icons on the desktop, and sort through and display the various error messages. If you dare touch ANYTHING during this process you’re toast. Might as well plan for the blue screen and eventually pulling out of the all the plugs to reset the whole thing.
(Don’t tell Bessie but if I do ever sell my book I’m buying a laptop )
Yep, my family puts up with a lot so I can pursue this dream, and I love them very much for it!