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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Me Time

As my boys get older – by the end of September they will all be adults, at least in age – they require less and less of my time. I used to think that would be a good thing. I used to look forward to the days that I wouldn’t have to bathe them, dress them, prepare their food, clean up after them and guide their daily movements. I enjoy the extra freedom I have since they started doing most of those themselves, although I do still cook and clean. However, I suddenly have a lot of spare time on my hands!

The question is what to do with my spare time?

I seem to be frittering away most of this extra time by lazing in front of the TV, which is not that bad a thing to do during a Melbourne winter, but also not that interesting or exciting or stimulating. However, the cold and the rain often put me off taking that step outside into a more adventurous land.

I was thinking I should revisit my “to do” list and see what I can cross off. Or I could write another list?

The other day, with the thought that I would eventually like to earn a living by writing, I booked myself into a talk at the Victorian Writer’s Centre given by three publishers. It was being held after work so I wasn’t tempted to go home at all. After circumnavigating a few city blocks over and over again trying to find parking, I gave up and found a car park several blocks away from where I was headed. I braced myself and walked briskly through the icy cold wind to my destination. I was a couple of minutes late. I took the elevator up to the talk and... walked straight into the talk itself! It was being held on the landing right in front of the elevators. All heads turned to look at me. Then I had to find a seat, naturally the only available ones were in the middle of already squishy rows. I hope I didn’t tread on too many toes as I stumbled in.

But the talk was good. They spoke on the types of writing they were looking for, the genres and how best to approach them. They suggested the best way for writers to be ‘discovered’ was to write! Publishers apparently do a bit of reading... I asked them if they ever read blogs, as opposed to newspapers and journals, and they do! So I now there is yet another reason to keep writing my blog. Apart from the sheer enjoyment I get from seeing my words on paper, I could be discovered one day! Like a super model or famous actress!

Do you think I should wear makeup when I’m blogging?

Anyway, the Victorian Writer’s Centre holds quite a few of these talks throughout the year, as well as other interesting events. I think I will try to prise myself off of the couch more often to attend them as I did get quite a bit of good information out of that one.

In the meantime... perhaps I’ll get my hair done and change my profile pic. Just in case a publisher starts lurking around my blog, I want to look my best!


  1. Isn't that how the Pioneer Woman was discovered, through her blog?

    Another thought is it's so weird to think while here in the US we are going through summer & while you are experiencing winter. Stay warm & dry. :)

  2. I attended several conferences @ Hawaii, was there with a very dear friend who's an awesome writer. I learned SO much from her and those conferences.

    #1 Lesson: Writing is a VERY painful process.

    Keep the faith.


  3. Conferences are great for motivation! Sounds cool.

  4. Martha - I'm going to google the Pioneer Woman right now!

    Jamie - I find writing very satisfying, but painful when I can't think of what to write about!

    Kazzy - They are good for motivation - I should get out more often.

    Betty - Thank you!

  5. Sounds like it would be interesting, and you could meet so many new faces.
    That's how I got noticed by press agents for doing book reviews. I just had a blog where I talked about books I had read and liked or hated, and one afternoon I got an email from a press agent at Harper Colins Canada. I'm currently doing reviews for 4 of the Canadian publishers now... I only get free books though.

  6. Write about what you love, and you can't go wrong :0) It sounds like a very interesting conference. Also a great way to make contacts. All the best to you!

  7. OMG, you don't know the Pioneer Woman??!
    She's the blog queen. Love her.
    And Dooce (Heather b Armstrong) is the blog princess, in my opinion.
    Both were 'discovered' in the blogosphere and make tons of money blogging and writing (cook)books.

    But of course you shouldn't do it for the money. Marnie is right, write about things you love or feel strongly about. Be real and have fun doing it!

  8. Oh yes Ca88! Wear makeup every day. It does make a difference.

    Your profile lists your occupation as the arts. Sometimes it's great to stretch your writing muscle by writing about anything and everything.

    Does your work need you to blog about them? Or write a newsletter?

    Or volunteer in your community and write for a local newspaper or write copy for a shelter, thrift donation center, etc. Millions of thing to write for once you stretch.


  9. Domestic - that's fantastic! Do you enjoy the books you have to read?

    Marnie - I've just been working out what I'm passionate about.

    Donut girl - I googled her! I guess I'm not big on cooking. But I have read Dooce and enjoy her.

    Deborah - lol I do wear makeup every day! I'm working on trying to include more writing in my job. Some great ideas there - thank you!

  10. Ca88andra... The books are a hit and miss. So far I can say there have been two that I keep recommending "Spin" by Catherine Mckenzie and "The Kitchen House" by Kathleen Grissom