Wednesday, May 5, 2010

All the leaves are brown, and the sky is grey

Yesterday started with a bang.


Tuesday morning, a storm, complete with thunder and lightning and sheeting rain, unleashed itself above our house at the very impolite hour of 6am, waking up the entire household.

The kids bolted out of bed - excited, and just a little bit scared by the thunder claps and the lightning scissoring across the sky - and pressed their noses to the kitchen window to watch the show put on by the elements, instead of the TV. Meanwhile, I did a mad search for the umbrellas that had been gathering dust since this time last year; handed them out (first making sure they all still worked!) and then kissed the brood goodbye as my husband and kids set off to battle peak hour traffic, slippery roads and idiot drivers who do not know how to drive to the weather conditions. [I could rant for hours about the absolute twits they hand out drivers licenses to in my city – but I'll spare you.]

Yesterday was the first time autumn Down Under had properly shown itself, and it prompted me to take an inventory of the kids’ winter clothing. I now have a list of who needs new winter jackets (the boys – they’re both growing like weeds), new socks (my daughter – she is queen of the single sock collection), new jeans, new boots, new gloves, new scarves …

It was all a little bit exciting, this realization that the cold days of autumn and winter are here.

It means writing season is officially open.

Summer time is not a very productive season for me, writing-wise.

In summer, my study becomes a hot little oven whenever the temperature rises above 25C, which seems to occur six days out of seven.

In summer, the kids are around me 24/7, home on their long break from school. I love them to bits, but they do take a big old bite out of my writing time.

And in summer, there is just way too much fun to be had – day trips to the beach, splashing in one of the four swimming pools we have access to (gotta love having friends and relatives with better back yards than ours!), bike riding, hiking, sitting on the balcony at 9pm with the husband and a glass of wine, watching the sun slowly set ...

It's only when the fun and distraction of summer is over, when it’s grey and wet and unappealing outside, that I really write.

Stuck inside, cocooned against the elements, writing becomes an enjoyable pastime that I long to get stuck into, rather than something to try to squeeze in to a busy summer schedule - especially when I start a writing session by brewing a hot cup of peppermint tea and donning my thick wool socks and my mangy old writing cardigan (yes, I have a writing cardigan. It's rather thin on the elbows, and bears more than a few tea-stains, but it's superbly comfortable and that's all that counts.) And with night falling earlier, I find I often write in the evenings, something I don’t do much at all on those balmy summer evenings with the balcony and the view and the wine and and my husband’s good company to distract me ...

So bring on the rain. I need to get this book done!

Tell me ... what time of the year are you at your most productive?

[And just a quick note to follow on from last week's post ... none of the kids are sick this week (touch wood), and I’ve had a couple of good writing days. Those tools I mentioned? They ended up working just fine. :-) ]

1 comment:

  1. It's difficult to say... in summer I like to write outside, but then the heat gets to me and I doze... in winter I am indoors a lot but that seems to lead to reading... spring and autumn are usually too windy outdoors.
    Just gotta remember to keep butt in chair :-) no matter what!