BACK IN THE SADDLE

horse pulling overloaded cart

how it feels some days

So what have I been doing all this time? Putting too many things in my wagon – that’s what!

Most days I sail along but others, I must admit, I feel a bit like the poor horse in this picture.
I’m teaching narrative at the University of Queensland, and yoga to the performance dance students at the Queensland University of Technology (yes I’m a yogi). I also teach both writing and yoga privately and edit other people’s work,as well as marking homework, looking after my family and keeping the household reasonably hygienic. And helping out my sisters with their small children and new baby.

I’ve also been busily organising a family trip to Europe to visit relatives – a first for all of us. Very exciting.

This has meant not much time is left for my own projects. I have a new short story half-written, and have gone part of the way through reading and marking up the draft of Dear Madman I wrote at Varuna. Oh how I long to return there to have some uninterrupted time to sit and ponder and immerse myself in the Madman’s world so I can better whip the manuscript into shape. A novel is a huge thing, you need time and space to hold it properly in your mind, to be able to figure out how best to bring it to life.

Today I have to agree with Toni Morrison,

“We are traditionally rather proud of ourselves for having slipped creative work in there between the domestic chores and obligations. I’m not sure we deserve such big A-pluses for that.”

She’s right. I’d rather have an A+ for finishing Dear Madman. An A+ for prioritising my own work.
Find some time for your writing today. See how good you feel when you do!

Oh, and Child of Fortune (the Cambodian novel of many names), is being read at a few major publishers as we speak. Getting a major publisher and some royalties coming in is one way to make sure my own work comes first. So cross fingers.

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2 thoughts on “BACK IN THE SADDLE

  1. Phillipa says:

    You have to be ferocious in guarding writing time from other duties. It’s a duty to yourself. I know what you mean about holding the novel in your head. You really need less fragmented time and a daily bath in the manuscript. Best of bestest luck with the Cambodian novel, it so deserves a big readership.

  2. Edwina Shaw says:

    Think I’ll just potter along rereading and thinking about it till the main teaching duties and all that marking ends! I can’t bathe in it yet, have to make do with a few trickling showers! Thanks so much for the good wishes re Cambodian novel. Will keep you posted. How’s your Sicilian adventure faring? Looking forward to reading it in its new incarnation. I see Azra is launching her hard copy of Not like my Mother at Avid soon. Will get there and give her a hug from both of us. Love Ed xx

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