January 24, 2012

Working From Home is WORK

Photo courtesy of tar0
Too clean to  be MY desk
I'm doing freelance writing from home. It doesn't pay a bundle, but it's still better than zero.

I am a master procrastinator - I put off doing stuff until the very last minute. I tell myself that I love a deadline.

I'm full of crap.

I missed my first deadline of my twenty plus year professional writing career last week. If it happens again, I'm done. Canned. Kaput.

There is plenty of blame to go around. It's not all me...trust me on that.

Okay, it's mostly me. 

Monday through Thursday, from 7:15 am until 3:30 pm, I am alone. It is quiet here. I should be able to crank out this stuff during the day.

Have I mentioned that in addition to being a procrastinator, I'm lazy? And easily distracted by bright, shiny objects like Facebook and Twitter? Oh, and I have email -ooohh, that looks like a good recipe!

Shame on me.

But it's not all my fault...it's genetics.

Have I mentioned that I have frequent bouts of insomnia? Yeah, sleep is optional around here...until I crash and fall into a coma-like state. I usually wake up by yelling The Boy's name, thinking that he didn't get on the bus.

The yelling usually occurs at about 1:00 in the afternoon...a full six hours after The Boy has left for school.

Anyway, I'll wake up all disoriented and drooling and really needing to pee.

After I take care of business, then I sit down to write. Before I know it, The Boy is home, and my solitude is gone. 

Does he greet me warmly? Ask me if I've had a good day?

"Hey Mom, log me in!"

I've discovered that I have difficulty writing when he's home. He drinks...loudly. And he eats...loudly and often.


I wish he'd take his headset off before speaking - he has no idea how LOUD he is.


Or, "HEY MOM, LOOK AT WHAT I FOUND ONLINE ABOUT (insert his latest obsession)!"

This goes on until he goes to bed at 8pm. Then it's quiet again - but there are dishes to clean up and OMG, did you see what she just posted on Facebook?

I have a big question: Do any of you do your housework at work? Don't you go to work to get away from housework? 

I can't imagine dropping the dirty laundry on The Mister's desk and asking him to get it done in the middle of his work day.

Something's wrong with this whole work FROM home setup. I still have work AT home!

But I digress. Have I mentioned that I'm easily distracted?

And don't even get me started about the anxiety that was created when The Boy's busmate had a pocketknife on the bus...or the number of phone calls I had to make after that went down.

Don't fret, nobody got hurt.

On Thursday, I clean enough to make it look like I didn't goof off constantly Monday through Thursday. I can't write much on Thursday.

I blame that on The Mister, and his insistence that we don't live in abject squalor.

The Mister comes home on Thursday evening at about 6:45pm after working out of town during the week. He eats dinner (that I have lovingly prepared, in lieu of writing). He gets his laptop out and sits oh, about eight feet from me and watches anime on Hulu.

It's in Japanese, with English subtitles.

Yet he still has the sound on...kinda loud. I get distracted by the characters speaking Japanese, and often think they are saying words in English.

Why doesn't he mute the sound? He likes the music.

See, how some of this is The Mister's fault?

I try again to write after he goes to bed (maybe about 10:30 pm). If Thursday wasn't a coma/nap day, I've been up since 5:45 am. I am tired - too tired to focus on writing.

I'm only human...don't let my super hero exterior fool you.

But I'm not too tired to play Bejeweled Blitz or Pet LLK on Facebook, or maybe watch some of my favorite TV shows online...

or write a blog post. Totally not my fault. The one site I need for research takes ten minutes to load. Stupid internet.

And there are still dishes to do and laundry to do.

And then, this past weekend? I spent Friday at a car dealership...and I missed my deadline.

Totally not my fault...again.

We also had Eli spend the night on Saturday. I sure couldn't write while I was driving to pick him up and bring him here.

Once here, he never stopped talking. He stayed up until 11:30 pm.

And I did neighbor Marcia's taxes because she needs the money pronto.

On Sunday, I finally lost my mind and freaked out a little bit.

I hate missing deadlines. I am ashamed.

I needed QUIET. But I had to yell to get it. 

I sat down and focused on the task at hand.

I tell ya, it was painful.

But I'm happy to report that I'm pretty much back on track for this Wednesday's deadline. I'll finish everything today (Tuesday), since I have a meeting at school on Wednesday.

not my fault.

Tonight, I was assigned 20 additional articles to write by 2/1.


I promise to do better. I must keep on track; I must write every day, no matter what is going on, or who is yelling at me. It is crucial. We have a car to pay for now.

A car that I have no time to drive, because I'm writing.

The irony of that fact is not lost on me at all.


  1. That is why I have not done that kind of work. I would go nutso.. I like writing but I think that would take the fun out of it for me totally to have a deadline like that.

  2. I am also a late to the gate writer and I DO do better under pressure, but still I have days like yours, so I DO understand. It's like a freak house around here, with the TV blasting someone slaughtering someone, while I try to tune it out, figuratively of course because he controls the remote control.

  3. I empathize, sympathize, and COMPLETELY relate.

    I've GOT to come up with a system...and a maid.

  4. I made the blog. I am sorry I took some of your time away. You know I appreciate all you do for me. You are a great friend and I promise to leave you alone when u r on the clock.lol. And you aren't lazy.

  5. well if that was the only time in all these years you've been late, then your employer needs to just be nice. gosh

  6. Having worked from home my entire life, I can certainly sympathize. My children were warned that they would only get my attention if they were bleeding profusely from a main artery. But, I didn't have Facebook and blogs to distract me. You'll just have to find a happy medium – and, believe me, it's hard.

  7. It takes some serious discipline to work at home. Good luck … 20 articles???!!!1

  8. Wow, that's a lot of rationalization. Not that there is a lick of evidence that I could do one bit better.
    Your missive brought this to mind.
    "I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by.”
    ― Douglas Adams

    Deadlines and the missing of them is a eons-old problem with our ilk. You'll be fine, just point your noggin toward the hard target and forge ahead. Things will interrupt, life for example, but just keep poking that bear till it bleeds success.
    Now, stop reading this and get back to work.


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