Diary of a Greenhouse Funny Prize Shortlisted Author

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Wednesday 8th August:  Day of shortlist announcement for the Greenhouse Funny Prize

6:15am Husband’s alarm goes off stupidly early.  No movement from said husband.

6:25am No movement from husband.

6:33am Still no movement from husband.  Consider divorce for waking me so early.

6:36am Starting to think husband might be dead and glad as this will be much more profitable for me than divorce

6:37am Poke husband as I mentally spend life insurance on a yacht off the coast of South America.  Husband alive and does angry bear growl for being poked.

6:38am Groggy husband trips over stray Lego on the way to bathroom.  More angry bear growling.

6:38am and 10 seconds Son is now awake and is playing with his fire engine siren.  Note to self: silent gifts for Christmas this year.

6:45am Pretend to sleep as son climbs up on the bed with loud fire engine siren.

6:45am and 32 seconds Still pretending to sleep as son pokes me in the eye to wake me.

6:46am Son spots rare opportunity of an open door to the kitchen and is on the hunt for lollipops and ice cream

6:50am Quickly check emails just in case Julia Churchill and Leah Thaxton have been dreaming about the manuscript I submitted to the Greenhouse Funny Prize and sent me an early morning message.  No emails from Greenhouse.  Despair that I will never make it as a children’s writer.  Tell myself negativity will jinx my chances.  Decide Julia Churchill must still be asleep like most normal people and tell myself I’m still in with a chance.

6:51am Discover son on the floor of the kitchen.  Two lollipop sticks in mouth.  Four in bin.  Diagnosis: lollipop coma.  Treatment: naughty spot where he sleeps off his lollipop hangover and I polish off remaining lollies when he’s not looking.

7:00am Breakfast.  Relatively uneventful.  Only two attempts by son to stick cheerios up husband’s nose.

8:00am Finally get a shower.  Refresh emails.  Surely Julia Churchill will be up by now and emailing me.  No emails from Greenhouse. Despair that I will never make it as a children’s writer.  Tell myself negativity will jinx my chances.  Decide Julia Churchill must still be asleep like most normal people and tell myself I’m still in with a chance.

8:13am Refresh emails.  Surely Julia Churchill should’ve emailed by now.  No emails from Greenhouse. Despair that I will never make it as a children’s writer.  Tell myself negativity will jinx my chances.  Decide Julia Churchill must be having breakfast and tell myself I’m still in with a chance.

8:46am Refresh emails.  No emails from Greenhouse. Despair that I will never make it as a children’s writer.  Tell myself negativity will jinx my chances.  Decide Julia Churchill must be getting ready for work and tell myself I’m still in with a chance.

9:00am Refresh emails. Still no emails from Greenhouse. Despair that I will never make it as a children’s writer.  Tell myself negativity will jinx my chances.  Worry that Julia Churchill’s email account may have been hijacked and her email to me has been lost in an internet blackhole but decide Julia Churchill must still be getting ready for work and tell myself I’m still in with a chance.  Also decide to leave my phone at home whilst I get ready to take son to playgroup because I have repetitive strain injury from refreshing my emails and I’m being driven mad by the tension of awaiting the results from Greenhouse.

9:34am Son makes it to playgroup in one piece despite trying to dive in to the back of the rubbish truck twice.

11:45am Playgroup has been a success today: son did not eat any playdough, he shared all the cars, successfully wee’d and pooed in potty, sang most of the words during the group sing-song and didn’t tell anyone that I’d done a fart.

12:36pm Check emails.  One new email from Julia Churchill with the following subject header: Greenhouse Funny Prize submission.  Heart pounding in my mouth.  Read email.  I’ve been shortlisted!

12:37pm I’VE BEEN SHORTLISTED FOR THE GREENHOUSE FUNNY PRIZE!

12:38pm Reread email and send reply to lovely Julia Churchill.  Reread email to triple check that I’ve definitely been shortlisted.  On cloud nine.

12:39pm Call husband to tell him good news but he’s not answering.  Must be in surgery.  Annoyed that sick patient is ruining my buzz.  Reread email from Julia Churchill.  Back on cloud nine.

12:40pm Spend the rest of the day with a big grin on my face.  Today I feel proud of myself.

Epilogue

Monday 13th August: Announcement of winner of the Greenhouse Funny Prize

8:00pm Finally get internet access again.  New email from Julia Churchill.  Heart pounding in mouth again but see the ‘sorry’ straightaway and realise I didn’t win.  Gutted.  Shed a quick tear on the phone to my sister.

Remind myself that I was shortlisted from hundreds of authors and I’m still proud to have made it this far.  Reread Julia Churchill’s email and feel incredibly encouraged by my future in writing.

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