Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Tess Hardwick

Squeezing Writing Time into my Saturday

I'm half way through the second revision of my first novel. It's taken me over a year of dutiful daily writing to get here, which is actually somewhat of a miracle, given I have two small daughters, ages five and two. The most common question I get from friends and family –

How have you accomplished this with two small children?

The answer is not pretty - by the sheer force of will, a lot of unwashed dishes, unfolded clothes, teenaged babysitters and dare I admit, the PBS Kids channel. My personal rule is I must write at least an hour a day and that includes holidays, weekends and vacations. Weekdays I write two to four hours a day, derived from early mornings, afternoon naptimes, late nights and babysitters.

Yesterday was Saturday and my husband prepared in the garage for a week long Boyscout camping trip with my stepson. The girls played with their older brother and I crept upstairs to my 'office' - a small desk in the corner of my bedroom - to work. I hoped to squeeze in an hour before anyone clued into where I was and begged for water, juice, lunch, hugs, a book - you get my drift?

So, here I am, writing covertly in my office, really on a roll, I might add, and Emerson's sweet voice drifts up the stairs. She swings open my bedroom door like the ringmaster at a circus and announces both through her odoriferous presence and the word 'poop', sung over and over in the melody of "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star", that she needs to be changed.

However, worse than the smell and anticipation of the cleansing of said poop- she has no diaper on.

I jump from my chair, catch her and hold her at arm's length, praying nothing plops from her cute plump bottom onto my clean beige carpet, or my somewhat clean shorts. She wriggles and flails her legs as I move toward her bedroom, my mind on the location of the discarded diaper and yet still swimming in the fictional scene in which I was so deeply immersed only moments before.

Think how much more I'll accomplish once she's potty trained!

Creating meaningful fiction in the middle of a busy life raising two small daughters, a teenage stepson and a husband.
Tess Hardwick
My Authentic Path
m: (206) 355-1735
b: http://myauthenticpath.typepad.com/
w: www.myauthenticpath.com

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