Monday, 24 September 2012

Voices & Viakal

I wonder if anyone's ever won an award for being a reasonably good writer with an impeccably clean bathroom?  I'd like to think JK Rowling had a quick whip round her kitchen with the ol' Mr Muscle before immersing herself in Harry's latest exploits.  Potter, that is, not Windsor.  Poor boy, has no-one heard of 'what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas'?  Anyway, I digress.

I would like to think that there's an organisation out there just waiting to recognise what I've achieved this morning.  "You mean to say you've dropped both children at their respective nurseries, cleaned the bathroom AND sat down to write, all before 10am?  Bravo, Madam, bravo."  It would be a gentle sort of awards ceremony, perhaps the sort of affair Phil & Holly might like to preside over.  Absolutely no frou frou canapés.  Gino D'Acampo could pop in and cook everyone a nice Carbonara with lashings of hammy flirting and parmesan.  Everyone would wobble home, Spanx bursting, but comfortably pleased with what a lovely job they were doing.

When the reality of having two whole mornings a week to myself started to dawn on me, I promised myself that I wouldn't do any housework at all.  I would pour every last minute into writing, creating a witty, heart warming and sparkling triumph that will leave its mark on British TV for all to see.  Perhaps I set the bar too high.  Perhaps it's a little less daunting to just aim for a really clean bath tub.  There is something very exciting about the first flutters of trying out writing wings.  To finally put down somewhere the various musings that ramble through my head, to offer them up and see if they raise a smile or knowing nod.  But it also brings with it a degree of anxiety, particularly in this era when Mummy blogs are everywhere and my musings are by no means the first.  I had a similar discussion with Mr W when we talked about my TV idea.  We agreed that the story itself may not be earth shattering, but it will be my voice, my way of telling it, that could make it stand out.

I remember when I first joined my local community choir, they were holding auditions for solo spots in the forthcoming concert.  My youngest was 6 months old, and I was just coming out of those hazy early months of feeling completely exhausted.  I put my name down to audition before really thinking about it, and hugged the secret to myself for a few weeks before finally declaring the news to Mr W with a flourish that probably warranted slightly more exciting news.  When the evening came, and the time to sing in front of 80 or so choristers approached, my heart was racing, in a sort of good way.  I prayed that I would be able to sing out loud as though I was on my own in the car.  And as moments go, it was one I hope I'll always remember.  Singing 'Amazing Grace', eyes firmly shut, and hearing my voice ringing out around the church we practise in.  It was like meeting a new person, in a way.  I don't entirely buy this business of having to completely re-discover one's identity after having children, but it has certainly been true for me that I've had more opportunities to work myself out a bit.  Hearing that voice leaping out made me feel as though there was much more to Mrs W than even I had realised.  And I'm hoping the same will happen with writing.

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