Thursday, March 11, 2010

Working and Writing from Home

Have I told you how hard it is to work and write from home?

So many of my friends are like, "Awesome! You work from home."

Yeah, not so much.

I'm a typical, Type-A workaholic. I have mellowed over the years, but still my initial inclination is to work, work, and then work some more. My employer loves that about me; my family not really. Working from home does have advantages:
  1. I can set my own hours.
  2. I can take a lunch with a friend at a moment's notice.
  3. I'm available to my son's almost whenever they need me.
  4. I don't have to worry about child-care if my sons are sick or off from school.
  5. I can work as much or as little as I want on any given day.
  6. I can work in my pjs or sweatpants if I want.
But there are also some disadvantages:
  1. My email is always on and I feel compelled to answer work emails even if it's after hours.
  2. There are no "after hours".
  3. My work is constantly on my desk or in view, 24/7.
  4. I can take a lunch with a friend at a moment's notice (sometimes it's hard to say no.)
  5. I can work as much or as little as I want on any given day.
I'm sure there are more for each list, but these are the first and foremost in my mind today.

Don't get me wrong; I love, love, love my job and the flexibility that it brings. I love being my own boss (essentially), but I do have to learn to say no to myself when it comes to work. I do try hard to take Fridays off, but most of the time I do end up working at least a half day.

When I write, I have to have designated "writing" days, and I don't usually write at my desk. I'm easily distracted by email especially, so I write (most of the time) on my netbook sitting in our big window in the living room. I am inspired by nature and by having it a glance above my screen keeps my juices flowing.

Do you work from home and write? What are your strategies for keeping on task and meeting deadlines, either work or writing?

2 comments:

Anita Clenney said...

I hear you, Kris. I've known people who go to Starbucks to write, but I write from home. You've hit on all my pros and cons. Too many days I do work in my PJ's and I get terribly distracted by the internet. Research or email. But, for now, I'll take the pros and continue to work from home.

I don't do strategies or schedules. (I should) I'm too spontaneous.But I depend on the creative urge that draws me to the computer. If I don't feel like writing, I don't, but then I do double time when I do.

I'm with you on "nature" as well. In the summer, I'll take my laptop and go out on the deck. The room my computer is in doesn't have windows, so I have a huge mirror on the wall that reflects the window from my kitchen. So I get the trees through reflection.

I love trees. And don't even ask my husband about my obsession with mirrors. Instead of paintings or artwork, I have mirrors. Lots and lots of them. It's been strongly suggested that I don't bring another one into the house :)

Kris Yankee said...

Thanks for the comments, Anita. I love being my own boss, but there are times where I get so crazy with work and home life (read as hockey, cub scouts, lacrosse, and actual HOME stuff), that it's a bit overwhelming.

I would love to be able to write whenever the mood hit me, but my life is way too hectic to live like that. Maybe someday when I don't have to work every day...