Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Reprise : Air and Light and Time and Space

To revive an old theme - those folks who say they simply do not have time to spare to write their magnum opus could learn a thing or too from Clare Morrall's example.

You may remember that Morrall was shortlisted the 2003 Booker with Astonishing Splashes of Colour, published by the independent Tindal Street Press.

Morrall works full-time as a music teacher in a Birmingham primary school and gives lessons to her older pupils after school hours.

The Bookseller reports:
For a long time, her writing was fitted around a very demanding schedule of both teaching and single-handedly bringing up her two daughters, now in their 20s, following a divorce. ... Writing was fitted in as best she could: "When the children were little there were early bedtimes, but that didn't last too long. For a time all I had was one morning a week for a couple of months and the occasional Saturday afternoon when they all went off with their father. So it was very difficult to squeeze it in. but I just got on with it. A lot of people talk about how they want to be a writer, but if you want to be a writer, you do it."
She works at the house of one of the other women from her school because she feels the need to get away from her own house to write: "She has this wonderful big house, so I can go up to the top floor and sit there on my own."


Anonymous said...

Everyone has time. It's just a matter of whether you enjoy doing it or not (or maybe whether you're masochistic or not :)) I think some of the people who say they don't have the time actually mean they're not interested and they don't want to go into a long discussion about the whys and wherefores. Why's it so hard to believe that some people might not want to write ? I'm not sure _I_ want to write. I don't want to write, I _have_ to write. I sell words. I'm like the guy at the party who does a magic trick.. after a while you get bored of doing it but everyone wants to see it. And I can't stop doing it now because there's nothing else I can do as well as pimp the language. And it pays the bills. And I'm stuck in this rut now anyway so whatever.

Or maybe they're afraid that people will be bugging them and bugging them to write every spare minute. Just imagine :

*whew* just finished the laundry, now for a cup of tea.


"Hello ?"

"Hey, got a minute ?"

"Sure, w---"



I tell you there should be literature "evangelists" like the Seventh Day Adventists.. knocking on people's doors and telling them their teeth and hair will fall out if they don't spend every spare minute writing.

People should do that, send emails saying "Hi, we're from (that website you're all familliar with) -- if you don't write 30,000 words this month.. BAD THINGS WILL HAPPEN TO YOU. You have been warned.

bibliobibuli said...

I like the idea of literaryn evangelists! I know some writer friends who would be very glad of someone to nag them. Maybe you could play the role and make some money from it so you wouldn't have to write so much?

Anonymous said...

Well you have masochistic friends then. Maybe.. think could pay the bills that way ? :)

bibliobibuli said...

Maybe all writers are masochists or they wouldn't write anyway ...

And yes, i think you could make a good income that way ...

3rd Chimp said...

Yeah, I agree with Anonymous (nice name, but a tad generic, don't you think?) I have never not had enough time to write, even back when working full-time in a non-writing job. That isn't the problem. The problems are laziness, distractions, anxiety, all kinds of things, but not time.