Desk Disappointment & Lame Excuses

Bella Osborne

Bella Osborne

By Bella Osborne.

Those of you who follow me on Twitter (and if you don’t then please do @osborne_bella) will already know the outcome of the desk delivery, so please bear with me.

As you know I was very excitedly awaiting the delivery of what I was terming my ‘forever’ desk. It had been a long while in the choosing and it was made of oak so I hoped it would be something that would accompany me on my writing expedition over the foreseeable years. I say ‘expedition’ as I hate the overused word ‘journey’ and a journey implies knowledge of destination whereas an expedition is a whole lot more unknown and exciting, so expedition it most definitely is!

I was counting down with family and friends and when Delivery Day arrived I was like an expectant parent. The phone rang early and it was Duncan to say that he would be arriving at 1.30pm! Yay! My desk was on his way and he was called Duncan! 7-year-old child was quick to point out that the desk wasn’t actually called Duncan and that a desk couldn’t use a telephone, but the name stuck.

Our elderly cat had taken up residence in the newly vacated corner and it had quickly become his latest ‘best place in the world’ to take a nap. So he was mightily unhappy when I kept moving him and hoovering the corner.

So the corner was hoovered a few more times and my laptop and other general writing detritus was packed up ready for its move from the dining room and I generally flitted about glancing out of the front window every now and then in case he, I mean, it arrived early.

Duncan arrived as promised and the unpacking frenzy began; husband, child and cat were all in the melee of cardboard and packaging. However, this all came to a grinding halt when I ran my hands over the beautifully crafted desktop and felt a wound in the surface. A barely visible split in the wood ran some 8 inches across the surface – nooooooooo! Disappointed doesn’t even come close! But the company that supplied Duncan were brilliant and promised a replacement in 3 days.

After such a disappointment were my family supportive? Well that depends on whether you think whispering and texting ‘Who killed Duncan?’ is a supportive thing to do. Despite this my husband did point out that we had planned for me to spend the afternoon writing, obviously the desk was missing but the opportunity was still there. I instead chose to play Cluedo with the child.

Now why is that? Why did I pass up a perfect opportunity to get some writing done? It was all planned, I had spent the morning with the child and my husband had plans to entertain her in the afternoon but I scuppered it all. It wasn’t really Duncan’s demise, I wasn’t that devastated, it was simply an excuse.

I’ve been wondering why writers spend so much time craving time to write and then sometimes, when it is available, we shun it for no good reason. Or is it just me? My forays onto Twitter and Facebook tell me that I am not alone in this strange trait. I simply love writing and I do grab time wherever I can but just occasionally I make an odd decision like that one which I nearly always regret. I never regret spending time with the child and given the choice of time spent with child or writing is always a painful dilemma. Perhaps time playing Cluedo with the child was the consolation prize I needed?

I am pleased to report that when the new improved Duncan arrived safely, he was utterly perfect and I spent the evening writing which felt totally brilliant, with the occasional intermission to run my hand over Duncan number two’s scar free surface. Let’s hope that now that I have my forever desk I seize all the writing opportunities that come my way but somehow I know a few will be lost to lame excuses. But for now I need to go as I have a hot date with ‘Duncan’!


Bella has just finished her first novel, Acting on Impulse, which earned her a runner-up place for the New Talent Award at the 2013 Festival of Romance. Every fortnight, Bella will be sharing her experiences and advice as a new author. She also has her own blog which you can visit by clicking here.

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Bella Osborne
Bella’s first novel, It Started at Sunset Cottage was released by Harper Impulse. She was a runner-up for the New Talent Award at the 2013 Festival of Romance and a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association.

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