…makes Nancy a dull girl. It’s true. But sometimes you can’t do much about it. I’m currently working 80-hour weeks to meet a tight deadline on a nonfiction project. It’s a good project, and I’m grateful to have it. But for the next 3-4 weeks it’ll eat up all my time.
When I switched from being employed to being self-employed, I had many of the typical fantasies about working at home. I could be my own boss, set my own hours, take time off in the middle of the work day if I felt like it. And those things are true—usually. I love working at home. I’m not a morning person, for example, and it was always hard for me to be in a classroom or an office by eight in the morning. And even after the thrill of working in my PJs wore off, it’s still nice to throw on a pair of jeans and a sweater and be all dressed for work.
But there’s a flip side. When you work at home, the work is always there. Yes, I can close my office door and go downstairs, but it’s not uncommon for me to head back upstairs at 10:00 p.m. to put in a couple more hours before I go to bed. And weekends are regular workdays (except on weekends I’m less likely to get email I have to answer). I took Sunday off for Mother’s Day, but that’s my last day off for a month. When I’m getting squeezed by a deadline like I am now, there’s not much choice. My publisher is relying on me to help them meet their schedule, and it’s in everyone’s interest for me to hold up my end.
But for a while, everything else falls by the wayside. I’ve had to ask for an extension on my Hellforged revisions. A couple of other creative projects are on the back burner—they’re simmering away, but I’d rather be stirring up the pot. And I haven’t had time to post much here or interact with people on Facebook and Twitter.
I’m not complaining. Nonfiction lets me make a good living as a writer. And rushing to meet deadlines is part of the feast-or-famine nature of freelancing. It’s part of the writing life, and I love the writing life. Most of the time. But I can’t really think about that now; I’ve gotta get back to work.