Thursday, September 9, 2010
Writing with the Toilet Seat Down
Virginia Wolff had it right; a woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.
Well, the money part might be a long time coming for me…but the room part? Well, read on…
I spent too long moaning, groaning, whining and crying about not having any where to write. Um…hello!? There is a whole world out there in which to write. Not EVERY human being can fill EVERY little nook and cranny. There is ALWAYS somewhere to write: on the bus, on the couch at 5 am, on a park bench, and in the bathroom.
The bathroom? Yes, it’s possible.
I will explain in a minute. So, for now, just cross your legs and read.
During a brief break from all the moaning, groaning, whining and crying, I finished blowing my nose with Kleenex-by-the-foot (toilet paper), and reflected on the past year. Armed with a set of goals set at the beginning of the year, I had ALWAYS found a place, and time, to write. Maybe not as often as I would have liked, and maybe not in a fancy oak desk with a leather swivel chair with my tea brought to me hourly by a Chippendale’s dancer....but I always managed to write.
And I guess I paid my dues because, so far as it seems, and although I am still in the early organizing/planning stages, my time has come.
I will have my own office.
Where I KNOW great things will happen.
Before you flush this down the toilet at my self-indulgent smugness, read on.
I live with three men; a husband and two sons. I am the minority. Space has always been an issue, what with everyone growing. Finding time to write, finding space for myself, has always been a challenge. But somehow, I have managed. Between refereeing at home, going to various extra-curricular activities, homework, meals, laundry, laundry, laundry, never mind forever cleaning the bathroom…..
And so very often, the bathroom is often my refuge. As long as I have super smelly soap that NO ONE is allowed to use, I am happy. As long as the bathtub is rinsed of sand, grass, and pine needles after their bath, I am happy. As long as the toilet seat is down, I am happy.
But what makes me most happy is finally having my own bathroom. Just a little powder room, but I don’t care. It’s mine.
We moved, and not only did I acquire a kitchen window, but an extra bathroom.
And I had a flash of brilliance, as I so often do, of TRULY making it mine.
Why not make it my office?
And of course I have told anyone and everyone about this; the bus driver, the girls at the grocery store, and everyone else in between.
A writer friend of mine had the brilliant concept of converting a commode to a chair, able to fit over the toilet. Another friend of mine came up with having a drop down table suspended by chains, from the wall.
THIS is going to be perfect.
I have yet to get to it; boxes are still being unpacked, furniture still being re-arranged. I still get confused as to where I am now keeping the Hello Kitty Waffle Maker. It will come together eventually. I have already stored ‘writerly’ things under the sink, awaiting the bathroom transformation - but it will come.
I am patient.
I’ve waited this long.
And get this: all through the move, through the packing/unpacking, chaos, and too many nights of ordering pizza (which really isn’t a bad thing), I continued to write.
Even, still, without the ‘office.’
Stay tuned….and while you’re at it, go change the empty toilet paper roll.