I’m mother to two young children and a Shih-tzu puppy, and I have my second novel to write. I intend for it to be romantic suspense, but so far, the romance is sparse. It’s pretty much a given that if I sit down to write a kissing scene, one of my dependents will interrupt me in the most unromantic way possible.
It goes like this:
I type in: He wrapped protective arms around her and lowered his mouth to hers…
Zoë: Mo-om! MOM! Silas is puking!
I type in: Tony was different from the other men she’d dated. He was cultured and debonair…
Silas: Mom! I pooped. Do I HAVE to wipe my butt?
I type in: Vivian tossed and turned, unable to sleep. What had she done to drive Tony away? After the way he’d kissed her the night before, she’d thought…
Zoë: Mo-om! Mo-om! Buster took my doll outside and is peeing on her!
So, I wait until after the kids have gone to bed. I sit on the couch, trying to work on the book, when my dog starts whining to sit on my lap. I pick him up, and he starts emitting the nastiest farts I’ve ever smelled. Time to change his dog food, I think, pushing him into his crate. The living room stinks to high heaven, so I retreat to my room. Sitting in bed, I try one more time to write.
My husband is sleeping beside me, looking angelically handsome. My mind goes back to our magical second date at Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site, and finally, I am able to write romance. Tony and Vivian are sitting in a moonlit garden, confessing to each other the fears and misunderstanding that have kept them apart for two hundred pages, when my husband begins loudly snoring. I glare at him and cram plugs into my ears. I’m reminding myself that he really is a good husband and that I should be grateful he cooks dinner and lets me sleep in on weekends, when he, too, begins producing unbelievably terrible farts. It is like the stench from every sin he ever committed in his life is eking out from between his tightly clenched butt cheeks. I climb into the top bunk of my daughter’s bed and pray she doesn’t start passing gas.
I wonder if the universe is trying to tell me romance really isn’t my genre. With all the gross-outs I encounter on a daily basis, I really ought to be writing for fourth grade boys.