Writing a Book or Bridget Jones’s Diary for Seniors

I promised readers of this blog that I would not post too often this summer, as I was going to write a book. And I am trying, I really am. What I am discovering is that this project is much harder than I expected. So to justify my slower-than-anticipated progress, I started writing about why I am not writing. I share this hoping you will understand why this mythical book will not show up as soon as I expected. While I rarely give up on a dream, I often need a reality check on just how much work is required to achieve it.

Cartoon by Marcia Liss

Cartoon by Marcia Liss

I have to preface this journal by sharing my constraints for my writing time. I’m totally a morning person. If I haven’t done my writing before lunch, it’s not going to happen. Productive time for me is 5:30-11:30 am. Now that my husband has given up working on Fridays to enjoy 3-day weekends, I feel guilty using these days to write a book unlikely to be published, so I calculate that I have four days, and subtracting time for exercising and a shower, about 20 hours a week. I write quickly, so surely that’s enough time over the next three months to do this. Or maybe not.

Unlike the 30-something Bridget Jones, I will not be obsessing about my love life (happily married and approaching the 50-year mark), my addiction to cigarettes or tendency to drink too much (NA), or my career (I’m retired). But although I have almost 40 years on her, I am still ruminating about my appearance, my friends, my self-image, and how my intentions often don’t result in action. So while I will not be sharing my daily calorie consumption, this diary is a senior’s quest for self-improvement. I am in search of the proverbial book everyone supposedly has within her. Like Bridget, I have realized, “You only get one life. I’ve just made a decision to change things a bit and spend what’s left of mine looking after me for a change.” LOL. Like Bridget, I know I will never live up to this resolution.

Day One – June 8: Writing time = 0

Ready to begin. But first, I went to the Apple Store early in the morning to upgrade my ailing phone, thinking I would get that out of the way so I could focus on the book. By 11:30, I was rushing out of said store with semi-functional phone to pick up my granddaughter whose school had finished for the year. Her mother had to work. Guess my book could wait. Lunch, art project, and sprinkler time finished and I now had time to read the 10-page letter about my late mother’s trust and what I needed to do as Trustee. Dinnertime – why did I think I would have time to cook? Then my usual early evening collapse to watch Veep and nod off while my husband watched something else. No book today, but tomorrow will be a fresh start.

Day Two – June 9: Writing time = 0

Got an early start but noticed my new phone still was not functional. Decided to call Apple support just as it opened at 7:00. To kill the time before then, started writing a blog post about how annoyed I am with technology. Apple support took 90 minutes and two technicians to transform new iPhone into duplicate of old iPhone with more memory. OK, I’ll take a quick shower, eat some breakfast, and call about the 10-page letter about my late parents’ trust. Customer service for the trust is unable to answer my questions, so I compose emails to my accountant and my parents’ attorney. My daughter calls with today’s schedule and suggests great ideas for two new blog posts. I’m not supposed to be blogging much now, but I may not be able to resist. OMG, it’s 11:15. Have to leave in 5 minutes to take granddaughter between-school-and-camp-schedules for a haircut and lunch so her mother can work. What about my work? Well, I guess I’m on a self-imposed deadline. Home at 1:20 and have an hour until next grandkid assignment. Not enough time to get started on my book, right? So might as well finish blog post about my iPhone irritation, as new phone still keeps asking me constantly for passwords. Then off to pick up another granddaughter from school so her mother can take her sister to speech and OT appointments. Take granddaughter and her older sister who still has no scheduled activities home. Play with granddaughters and start dinner for all three girls.

Reader, are you still with me? I will check out the “likes” to see if anyone cares about a senior struggling to write a book


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