Amongst my weaknesses – easily distracted. Being an artist it’s always been easy to excuse sensible and practical behaviour, like getting a proper job or thinking about pensions. The daydreamer, the romantic fool, the almost-dunce at school, um hmm that was me. Staring out the window can be so like contemplation. That old proverb about rolling stones could have been written for me, flitting from poem to short story, to memoir to pretensions of writing a novel. Throw in my artwork gathering dust under the bed, (apart from that which has been stolen, yes stolen from me!) my card-making taking up room in boxes, my needlework now stuffed in plastic bags awaiting all the designer (me) bags and soft upholstery, the unfinished un-landscaped garden yearning to join the National Garden Scheme, and the cakes … oh yes the cake-making wanting to set up business at boot fairs, and so on and so on. Approaching 60 now, and still scraping a living, one can make one of two decisions, continue as one is, flitting from one thing to another and living as simple a life as one is able to, or become totally sensible, select one avenue and make one’s way decidedly up it. The transition must of course, begin with a List. I remind myself that much of my poetry emerged from shopping lists, when the eye glazed over the mince, beans and eggs, the fickle mind would wrest that pen, and off it would run, settling in some rural idyll where the love interest would have such fantastic eyelashes and read me Neruda with a French accent. But this list is to be one of Time Management; that ghastly word efficient people use on courses.  My identification of the single avenue can only be recognized through working my way down the list. So: I have now ordered my week. No longer will I arise at dawn, drink tea, check emails, go on Facebook, and if haunted by a poem, let it possess me. No. From today I will rise at dawn, drink tea, check emails, go on Facebook and Do Promotion. Monday is Promotion Day. No other day will be the day for emailing people who have never heard of you, entering competitions I never win, suggesting wonderful useless ideas to literary people. Only Mondays. I’m doing well so far. Today I have sent off a Promotion to a Magazine. That’s it, took me all morning. Now that’s out the way, I look forward to tomorrow which is Gardening/Housework depending on the weather, and Wednesday and Thursday which is solely for writing, (currently, In Margate by Lunchtime, short fiction), and Thursday which is for Craftwork. Weekends are free. For idly, and looking out the window.

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