If it's not too much trouble, this Christmas I'd like an extra hand.
Not figuratively, mind you. I'm talking an actual hand, one with five nifty fingers that can tap away at my computer keyboard while my other two (the now-weary ones) get on with the business of holidaying with my family—you know, holding the kids' hands as we head off to the beach. Holding the tent up while the hubby hammers in the pegs. Dipping a finger in the saucepan while the other hand stirs the gravy.
You see, I'm in conflict mode again.
You'll recognise this from last year. I'm really looking forward to taking some time off and enjoying the festive season with my long-suffering family. I want to be there for them, look forward to it in fact, yet I'm really, really keen to get some extra writing in.
The truth is, I'm itching to blank out the diary and get on with finishing the second installment of my popular Agatha Christie Book Club series. It's way overdue and my readers are getting antsy.
Yet I can't do it without a spare hand. Really I can't.
And in case you're wondering, I don't need another brain, so please don't waste your time on that. I mean, don't quote me on this or anything, but it doesn't take a lot of smarts to lie in a hammock and chill out with the kids. I've been cooking Christmas roasts for a decade so that's a cinch, and as for the hubby? As long as I smile vaguely and laugh at his jokes, he may not even notice.
But a missing hand will be a disaster. How will I properly wrap the pressies, stuff the turkey or hug my loved ones? How on earth do I explain that?
Nope, sorry, only one thing will do, and that's a whole other hand to stay behind in my office and continue with the book. It needn't be new, I'm really not fussy. In fact, now I think about it, it's preferable that it's second-hand. An older woman's would be ideal! One that's worked as a secretary long before the fancy schmancy title Personal Assistant was invented and delete buttons appeared on strange contraptions called computers.
There is no hand more efficient than an elderly secretary who got her chops on a rusty typewriter sans carbon paper and White Out.
But if you can't manage that, all I ask is that it has a pretty good word-per-tap count. That way I can leave it to get on with the business of typing my next novel, while I get back to the busyness of the holidays.
Is that too much to ask?
I hope not, Santa. After all, not all of us have a team of trusty elves hanging around to do our handiwork.
Thanking you in advance and with much anticipation...
PS: Feel free to throw in a nose for a good story while you're at it.