Weekly update from bed

open notebook in bedI’m writing this post at 8pm on Saturday, 9th August. I’m in bed, eating an apple, there’s an oversized mug of liquorice tea on the windowsill, a pile of notebooks, pens, poetry books and magazines sinking into the mattress next to me like a silent lover. Ooo-er. We’re not long back from a 12 mile cycle ride along the beautiful Avon and Kennett Canal, with a stop-off at a friendly, canal-side pub for a bite to eat and a half pint of cider. It’s the first time the four of us have been together in over two weeks, since Andrew’s been travelling overseas with his job. Now we’ve cycled home and dispersed to various rooms: beyond the closed door I can hear Andrew and Kitty watching an old James Bond film; Johnny playing some kind of online game and chatting to his mates via Skype.

I’m on one month’s leave from The Reader Organisation and I’ve put my poetry blog, And Other Poems, on hold for the time being. I have the luxurious feeling that time and space is opening out to me like an undiscovered room in this house. Even this bedroom and this bed with its newly changed sheets seem like the perfect location to read, make notes, write.

My major focus has to be on my forthcoming pamphlet (still due at the end of the year, possibly late October, according to Gareth Lewis from tall-lighthouse) and now I have time, at last, to properly concentrate and decide on a title, as well as finishing work on the poems I want to include.

I’ve missed every competition and submission deadline that I thought I might enter this year because of my head being full of Reader Organisation work or my pamphlet. Now I’d really like to prepare a submission, or even several submissions, to magazines or competitions.

Of course, it won’t be like going on a writing retreat, something I frequently fantasise about (8pm to bed, striped notebook in bedfantasies about writing retreats – you can see the kind of wild person I am, can’t you?). Disappearing for a month just isn’t on the cards for me, not until the children are completely independent or Andrew has a job which allows him to work permanently from home. But I am blessed with a husband and two children who honour my closed doors, who understand my encampments in bed, on sofas, on floors, even at desks on occasion. They’re happy to leave me to my scribblings, paper-rustlings, typing while they carry on with their own lives around me.

Now, back to writing, and you won’t hear from me again until my pen has run out of ink – or I run out of liquorice tea. 🙂

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