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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Writer's Life (05/13/10)

TITLE: There's Always Tomorrow
By Micheline Murray
05/19/10


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“Bye! Have a great day! Love you!!” I called as my youngest ran to the bus, her blond ponytail bouncing behind her. One last wave as the bus pulled away, and I turned back inside. Today I’d set the entire day aside to finish a story I’d been working on for weeks. Today was the day to FINISH.

“Susan! Yoo-hoo! Susan, wait! I have to ask you something!” I heard my neighbor’s shrill voice. Shoot! Can’t pretend I don’t hear her; will just have to cut it short if she starts rambling. I dutifully looked toward my older neighbor who had way too much time on her hands . “Hi there--what’s up?” I asked as she hurried to meet me. “Well, I was just wondering if you know why the garbage men come so late. Sometimes it sits on the curb until almost lunchtime…” My heart sank as she continued from one lament to the next. Just then my cell phone rang. Apologizing, I took the call and retreated into the house before she could start in again.

“Hi honey, you have NO idea how glad I am you called! Your cell phone? Um, yeah, of course I can. I’ll be there right away.” This won’t take long--it’s only 9:15.

Back again, the microwave clock read 9:55. Perfect, I’ll start a load of wash and be writing by ten. And I did just that. Immersed in my story, I wove in details and sensory images, even bringing in a twist near the end. A knock at the door startled me, and I was even more surprised to see that it was 11:30 already. “Hi there! I need to read your electric meter!” the power authority worker smiled. We’ll see how cheery he is after wading through my dirty laundry. “Right this way,” I led him down the basement steps and across piles of clothing. Why is the underwear always on top?

Escorting him back up and out the door, I went down and put another load of wash in, took chicken out of the freezer and went back upstairs. Might as well get a quick bite now; it will save me stopping for lunch later. I whipped up my favorite --peanut butter and jelly with chocolate milk, ate, loaded up the dishwasher from breakfast, and got back to my story just as the fire station whistle let everyone know it was noon. Noon? Already? What’s that Champ? You want to go out? Of course you do, because I just sat down--ok boy- out you go.

Sitting once again…there was….nothing. Nothing at all--no words, no ideas, n-o-t-h-i-n-g. It was as if a wall went up between the computer screen and my brain, with nothing able to penetrate between the two.

I must need a break-can’t believe it’s almost 12:45. I’ll sit outside with Champ for awhile. Oh, what should I have with the chicken tonight?

Settled into the chaise lounge in the warm sunshine, I sighed deeply and relaxed. Relaxed a little too much apparently, because the next thing I knew Champ barked to greet my oldest home from school! It was 2:15. As quickly as he came in he was back out, heading to the gym,, and I, determined, returned inside.

Typing away, the words came once again. As each of the kids came home, they grabbed a snack and joined me at the table to start their homework. We worked together for quite awhile, unaware of the time.

One by one the kids finished, and moved on to the backyard. I got up for a potty break, breaded the chicken, put it in the oven and pulled out a box of Stove Top stuffing and a bag of frozen veggies. Looking at a basket of clean towels, I decided to join the kids--towels, and writing, would wait.

They tried to teach me a new game and gave up, deciding it was easier just to tell me when it was my turn, when I was “out,” and once, when I won! The stove timer beckoned me back inside, as my husband pulled in the driveway. Wow--5:30 already--I’ll have to finish writing tonight after our daughter’s orchestra concert.

The concert was over, ice-cream served and cleaned up, last load of laundry pushed through, lunches packed for tomorrow, garbage outside for the morning pickup (hopefully early morning for my neighbor’s sake!). What? It’s 11pm? I can’t possibly start writing now, I am so tired! Well, there’s always tomorrow…


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This article has been read 325 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Rikki Akeo05/20/10
Exactly!
Arlene Showalter 05/20/10
I didn't get around to writing for the challenge this week (for all the same reasons), but had I written...it would have been for all the same reasons! Thanks for being my spokesperson this week!
Brenda Shipman05/23/10
Ahhh...life always seems to be "getting in the way" of our writing, and yet without it, what would we have to write about?! Well told!
Author Unknown05/24/10
first time I read this, I wanted to comment to tell you how real this felt to me- but I had to get back to an insistant toddler. this time I thought- oh yeah! I liked this and just as I hit the comment box, a whimper started from the small girl in the next room. this is all to say-- it may not be every writer's life but it's sure as heck mine.

good job, wish I could give you better feedback (more helpful) but, um, you know how this goes!
Carole Robishaw 05/24/10
Don't be silly, a REAL writer would never tolerate a life like... "what, oh, just a minute, honey, I know mommy said that already, but this important,"...uh, where was I?
Beth LaBuff 05/25/10
I could see this whole story, and can attest to the reality of this! :) I enjoyed the touches of humor here, too! Very nice!
Noel Mitaxa 05/25/10
Love the honesty and humour along with the interruptions, though as an empty-nester I can assure you that interruptions never quite disappear. Well done.
Susan Montaperto05/26/10
You mean I'm not the only one with barking dogs, ringing telephones and the many interruptions of a busy day. Thank you very much. I really enjoyed this, especially the reminder that there is always tomorrow.
Lyn Churchyard05/26/10
I'd laugh hysterically if it weren't so true. Absolutely a writer's life. Well done, very well done indeed.