_The other day I was wondering how others manage to fit in their lives around their writing. I mean, isn’t it burdensome (life I mean), when all you want to do is write?

Take my kids. They are nine, a girl and boy, twins, and as double troublesome as the concept brings. I often hear them pleading in the background when I’m tinkling on my keyboard, ‘Mum, please will you help me with my literacy homework?’

I have a hard and fast rule of always putting my motherly matters first. ‘Come and sit down next to me,” I say, ‘and observe me writing a fabulous chapter in my new book.’

‘Mummm,” they complain.

“What? That’s literacy isn’t it?’

Another time, ‘Will you help me with my numeracy?’ There's a tone of desperation in their voices.

‘Of course, I will.’ I'm often overly-generous. ‘I just need an hour to finish this chapter. Go and work out how many seconds that is and then come back in that many minutes.’

‘Mummm,’ they say, as they trundle off down the corridor, each with a fully inked pen and a blank sheet of paper in hand.

So then the husband arrives back from that thing he calls work (whatever that is). ‘What’s for dinner?’ he asks with a hopeful twang.

‘Urghhhh,’ I splutter, with a tinge of guilt in my voice. ‘I just need to finish this chapter.’

‘But I’m starving.’

I can hear the kids behind him, egging him on. I surmise they’re hungry too. I’m good at picking up on things like that. ‘Okay, I’m on it,’ I say, as they all trundle (once more) down the corridor to answer the door bell.

‘Pizza!’ the hub calls from the other end of the house. I almost didn’t hear him, so intent was I on coming out of the 'Deliveries to Your Door ' Internet site and back into Word.

The phone rings. The voice on the other end sounds official. I wonder if I should worry. ‘It’s about your bank balance, or lack thereof.’

I feign a coughing fit. ‘Can you hold on a minute?’ I splutter, ‘I’ll just finish this chapter and then we’ll chat.’

Fifteen minutes later I hear a screech coming from the receiver lying next to my keyboard. I pick it up. ‘Hello?’

‘I’m still here.’ The voice is almost hysterical. ‘About that bank balance...’

‘I’m working on it,’ I shriek in return. ‘I’m going to get a call from a publisher any day now and they’ll no doubt make me a six figure offer. Jeeze! What more can I do?’

I slam the phone down, satisfied I had taken care of yet another everyday task.

So there you have it. There are always ways to balance your everyday life with your writing life when you're on that ever-elusive road to publication. You just need to put things into perspective and prioritise the important stuff.

Keep writing.
Wendy



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