Thursday, July 11, 2013

Working From Home is Harrrrd

So...I work from home.

And by work, I mean writing is my job (one I don't get paid for--yet--but job nonetheless)

You'd think it would be rad making and keeping your own schedule. Having your passion and the success of your friends to motivate you. You think you would crank out words like every one was the last word in the existence of the universe and it had to be you to type it.

And it is rad. It's rad in a million and one ways. Ways like:

gardening, and laundry, and dishes, and landscaping, and...

Very little time at your computer banging on the keyboard.
I didn't realize until these last two weeks how much I relied on syllabi, and pre-scheduled work and reading, and the threat of bad grades if I missed a due date, to keep me on track. And now I need these things but in my work-from-home environment.

I've tried making a writing schedule on iCalander and setting reminders in my phone so Siri can yell at me to switch gears from house stuff to writing. But these things just don't work.

I need a manager, someone to keep me on task. Someone to give me daily/weekly word-count goals to work toward, and to impose penalties for not reaching my goals.

Le sigh...

Happy Reading. Happier Writing.



stu said...

I work as a full time ghost writer, so I have deadlines to keep me on track, but the main thing is that if you're serious about it being a job, you have to treat it like one. 9-5, producing the work as you go.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Work is hard, especially if you do not have structure to shape it. Life is intrusive and insists on fouling your best laid plans. Try to get at least one page done each day -- after a year, you will have done a 365 page novel.

If you find a story that you love, it will help fire your enthusiasm to keep going. But Stu is right. A hobby will wither in awhile. If you approach it seriously, the work will show it. Best of luck!

Elizabeth Twist said...

For me, the 9-5 formula doesn't work - partly because one of my jobs is to run support for my partner (the 9-5 traditional job person in our household) and my other two jobs require me to be away from my desk at odd hours. Also, I find writing is not so much a job as something that worms its way into almost every little corner of my life. Creative work is like that. I require vast swaths of time spent staring into space or out walking in order to function in it, followed by concentrated bursts of productivity. Often it's something I have to ramp up to or trick myself into doing. It's a headspace more than it is about "BICHOK" (butt in chair, hands on keyboard). It's not a hobby, nor is it a job, it's life.

Bottom line, there's a big difference between knowing you want to write and actually writing. It can take a while to get down to it, but if you're dreaming about it, sooner or later you will get down to it.