Anyone who thinks that writing for a living is a quiet, gentle occupation is just SO wrong. Do you imagine a scene with the writer, coffee by his side, sitting serenely tapping away at the keyboard, pausing only to think for a few seconds before beaming with pleasure and then tapping away again? Wrong.

Writer sitting at keyboard scratching head, swearing and cursing. Types one sentence erases it. Gets up to find missing sock. Sits down again. Reads last few sentences. Child rushes in screaming there is a snake in the garden which has now gone up the drainpipe. Tell child to get gaffer tape from camera box and tape up bottom of drainpipe. Scribble note to husband to flush gutters when he gets home. Drinks coffee. Gets up to make more coffee. Child rushes in to say neighbour’s child has fallen in the pool. Ask is it drowning? No, then go back out and play. Taps out six more words, reads, deletes them. Gets up makes more coffee, then sits, then gets up and scribbles shopping list. Phone rings, reminder piece is due tomorrow. Child rushes in, takes one look at face and disappears. Someone turns on TV, scream at them to turn it off. Taps out two more sentences, pause search for right word, decide to check sales figures for 17th time that day. Doorbell rings, scream out for someone to answer it while moaning that Tolstoy never had these problems. Go to make more coffee, change mind make for liquor cabinet… to be continued.

I suspect Henry VIII never had this problem. He would have made sure his study was peace and quiet. I bet he didn’t have servants running in every five minutes saying that France was threatening to attack, or there was a punch up between the ladies in waiting, or that Catherine had just ordered a dress costing thousands, or the greenfly were attacking his roses. Ah, to be royalty. But then poor Henry did have his problems too.

The caption for this picture which I also included last time was Henry eyeing up the talent.


He wanted the Pope to give him a divorce from the first one, Catherine, because she was arrogant. He had married her a very long time ago, she only produced a daughter and he wanted a son, and anyway, he fancied Anne Bolyn.

The Pope refused and so Henry divorced her anyway and set up the Restoration and made himself head of the Church of England.  In case the Pope got in first, he sacked all the churches and monasteries and took all the precious artifacts and kept them for himself.


FOR SALE – ancient abbey great location, good address, in need of a little TLC. Planning permission to extend already granted.

Sadly ANNE only produced a daughter so he had HER head chopped off because SHE got it wrong as well. He married again, and again and again and again, and got one son who was quite poorly, so he lost interest and took up tennis instead, while bullying Cardinal Wolsey into handing over Hampton Court…. to be continued.


Hampton Court (nice tea shop).


  1. With my daughter, her husband and my grandson living with us, it can be noisy. The TV is going, the grandson screaming, the dogs needing out or need a walk. I try to write when they’re out. Son-in-law goes to school and my husband works nights, so I have a few hours in the morning to write while it is quiet. Last year in spite of the noise, I managed to publish three books and one short story. This year my goal is three books (one is very short) and two short stories.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow that is productive, even now the kids have left home and I’m pretending to be retired, the most I can manage is 2 books a year and I’ll struggle this year with a blog and a newsletter to send out 🙂 Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Every day seems like a battle to find space and peace in my house, there’s always some calamity brewing just at the periphery!

    I chuckled at your condensed history of Henry VIII, it’s one of my favourite periods in history. Have you ever come across the Horrible Histories versions? My kids loved them when they were younger. They also do some brilliant songs to help kids remember, they are still stuck in my head today;

    “Henry the eighth was a big fat man
    Loved to stuff his face from the frying pan”

    Google it!


    • Nicola, i took my original lecture ‘All the Kings and Queens of England in 59 minutes and 23 seconds’ from reading 1066 and All That which was written in the 60’s I think – it’s hilarious. As for Horrible Histories I have several on the video recorder box to watch and I also go on uTube – they are brilliant.


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