An Army Wife … What Makes a Marriage Work?

That’s me. A military wife, and probably the most unlikely one.

Compared to the disciplined and structured life that soldiers and officers exist in, I am chaotic, untidy and quite possibly verging on unhinged. Quite how the marriage works, you may well ask, and I can only assume that the more we analyse, the theory of opposites attracting is becoming less theoretical and more factual.

We tease each other relentlessly. And the fact of the matter is, if I was married to someone as slovenly as myself, it would surely only be a matter of time before I started clearing up supper the following morning and leaving my endless reams of paper from the book scattered on every surface, and the screwed up balls of discarded nonsense strewn over the floor for days. God forbid, I might not even get dressed in the mornings …. although I do have wonderful daydreams of floating around the apartment in a silk kimono, scarlet lips sipping on a coupe glass of champagne as I listen to Vivaldi, whilst writing frenzied chapters of the book …

The Colonel (aka my husband) tells me he would loathe be married to a female version of himself. Oddly, I get that. But imagine how tidy their cupboards would be. From time to time he sorts out the kitchen and I swear that when I came back from my cycling jaunt the herbs and spices were lined up in alphabetical order. Although, in his defence, tidying is therapeutic.

So perhaps we all need a little bit of opposites attracting alongside compatibility, love and understanding of each other. And perhaps also we need our friends of the same sex to offload the drivel to. I’ve recently finished the book ‘The Happiness Project’ by Gretchen Rubin who says just that. Sometimes women need women and men need men.

So, as the Colonel finishes organising and holding a socially distanced Remembrance Service at the UN, my eyes well up with pride and admiration. I certainly don’t have his qualities of planning but I guess we all bring something to the table … in this instance, it’s a huge chocolate cake, specially for him with maybe a bit of ice cream on the side.

Katie x

Last Week I Met an Author.

Last week I met the author Barbara Taylor Bradford OBE. She has written 35 novels, sold over 30 million copies and is apparently worth in excess of 300 million dollars. That’s a lot of books and an awful lot of money.

When I think of us all tap, tapping away on our iPads and laptops with our spellcheckers and predictive text working overtime, I wonder if when she began in the 1970’s she wrote on a manual typewriter with a dictionary and thesaurus to hand.

She was charming and very beautiful. I was star struck and developed a rather strange lisping stutter. I did however manage to ask her how disciplined she was about her writing. Ridiculous question of course, but surprising that I managed to utter any words given the sudden vocal constraints. I’m sure she wouldn’t mind if I told you she starts at five o’clock every morning and with only a short break at lunch, continues writing all day. Ahh! So yes, really rather disciplined.

So with this in mind, I have adjusted my daily schedule to, if not exactly rising at five, certainly by nine o’clock I am wrestling once again with my final editing. I’ve begun researching appropriate agents and pondering over query letters and all the while, thinking about beautiful Barbara and how hard she works, day in, day out despite being over 80. Quite an inspiration. I just wish I hadn’t have offered to find her a cab … of course she had her driver waiting for her downstairs … what a durr I am.

Katie xx

Is there anyone who really inspires you to write or work?