Too many hours in this day…

Ah, children. They seem to have the opposite problem entirely to that of writers: they often think there is too much time in one day. I had to disappoint my son with this very thing, earlier this afternoon. Sitting patiently in front of the turned-off television he looked up and asked if he could watch CBeebies, to which I said no, not yet, not until four o’clock which was still three hours away. The poor chap sighed, puffed out his little cherry lips and said “Too many hours in this day.”

Too many hours? My God, if only. I would grab hold of those extra hours, the ones annoying all the people (children, mostly) who just wanted rid of them, and write the HELL out of that extra time.

There was once a television programme called Bernard’s Watch, an oddly silent children’s show following the eponymous boy and his magical timepiece; a pocket watch that could FREEZE TIME. He tended to use this extra time (my god, even writing that phrase gives me shivers) for good; solving problems, helping people, never, ever stealing money from open tills or sneaking a peek in the girl’s changing rooms.

If I could freeze time I would write. Obviously. But I would also do so much more and how beneficial those other experiences would be to my writing. Pressing pause in a crowded room and following every line of sight, see where people were looking and who was looking somewhere they shouldn’t be. What expression their faces would hold, the tension their hands and feet would betray, whose eyes were meeting whose. I would rewind to those amazing moments in our history, the births and deaths and marriages, and pause again, savouring those moments of human vulnerability from every single angle.

And I would write.

And I would write.

And I would write.


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