Today I read Sally Cronin’s Smorgasbord post about the late Sue Vincent and Mary Smith. Both are bloggers I followed.
Sally’s post includes a brief biography of each, which left me wondering how those of us who scribble away from a contained life in (relatively) comfortable circumstances can aspire to emulate writers with so much more life experience.
I was going to say, ‘compete with writers’, but one thing I have learned is that competition doesn’t come into it. There are readers for every story, and since I started this journey, I have been uplifted by the encouragement of fellow writers, most of whom don’t know me from Eve.
But sometimes I look at my mundane life of school, training, childrearing, librarianship and retirement, and I find little there to fire my imagination into storytelling.
Some of my daily routines today are unchanged since I was bringing up four kids and working full time. Routines such as ignoring the housework until dust gets noticeable enough to appreciate the difference; keeping a spare can or packet in the cupboard or freezer so the user can put it on the shopping list when they take the last one.
Most of my kids now live at the other end of a motorway (the youngest is on the other side of the world).
In this time of increasing costs, I could instead replace items only when they run out. How would that save money long-term, though? I don’t throw away food now.
Unless the freezer breaks down.
Or we get a lengthy power failure, like those caused by storms in parts of the UK recently.
So far, we’ve been lucky. Such things have happened to other people.
And then I thought what it must be like to have your home and belongings and routines and sureties bombed into non-existence. How it must be to abandon every routine you ever maintained, every item you ever cherished, every vestige of your life. Maybe even the people you love.
I hope I may never know.
But it surely puts the trivial concerns of me and my mundane story characters into perspective.