Monday, March 20, 2017

"How I Write" from Author Sherri Smith

Since having children (I have a four year old daughter and seven month-old son) how I write has definitely changed. First, I no longer have a room of my own. My desk is now currently next to a cloth diaper bag and so that romantic image of the writer tortured by her art is replaced with one being physically tortured by a ripe diaper. Second, I can no longer procrastinate. I was once able to pace around a room, stare out a rain-drizzled window while tugging on my scarf, pen pressed to lips, waiting for my muse to show. Those luxurious days are long gone.

Now I write in rapid, frenzied bursts in a kind of covert operation way (I sometimes really do fight the urge to wear camo and army roll my way over to my computer so no one sees me.)  I write with my daughter in my lap, my Word document opened up next to some obnoxious YouTube video. I write standing, with just one hand, pecking at the keyboard as I try to bounce my son who’s morphed into an angry red siren, because a bubble of gas is trapped somewhere in his little body. I write when I can, usually under some kind of emotional duress, often feeling guilty that I should be doing something more motherly instead.

And so, I’m a far more resilient writer now. I’m toeing the work-parenting line here, I’m juggling roles! I can’t wait around for things like inspiration to come calling because I don’t have the time. I force it out. I’ve become more efficient, there’s less wallowing and more doing. If a muse came nosing around here now I’d flip it the bird because I am not into co-dependence and I’ve got diapers to wash. Yes, everything about writing has changed and I’m better for it. Or at least hardier and I have my lovely children to thank for that.


When not writing SHERRI SMITH spends time with her family and two rescue dogs, and restores vintage furniture that would otherwise be destined for the dump. She lives in Winnipeg, Canada, where the long, cold winters nurture her dark side. FOLLOW ME DOWN is her first thriller. Visit her online at, and on Twitter, @SL_Smith_.
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