Some people get a dreamy look on their faces when I tell them I’m a writer. Even friends change their tone of voice when they ask about my work: “How’s your writing going?” can sound suspiciously like “How’s your vacation going?”
It’s the popular notion that writers tranquilly spend their days in their PJs, occasionally looking off into the distance to think of just the right words to express themselves. Um, no. The time I spend tapping on my keyboard often only follows frenzied arrangements for interviews, transcribing notes, researching multiple topics and making sure my to-do list is set up to do it all over again tomorrow.
So, what these people are thinking about my work life is “Ahhhh . . .”
When in reality, what I’m often thinking is “Ahhhhhh!”
Add in the WAHM factor and “tranquil” is about as accurate a description of my work day as it is for a traffic cop in the middle of a four-way intersection. Today and tomorrow, for example, my kids are off from school for the NJ teachers’ convention. Translated, that means a four-day weekend — for them.
It also means there are four teenage boys in the next room raiding my freezer, making inappropriate jokes and loudly yelling at TV game show contestants they think are stupid. And two tween girls up in my daughter’s room blaring Justin Bieber music, giggling wildly. And me thinking that somehow I’ll be able to tune all this out enough to write two articles before 11 a.m. tomorrow.
And I will, even if I’m still writing at 9 pm tonight. But I won’t correct people’s misconceptions of my work. After all, I am sitting in my favorite leather chair right now wearing a cozy fleece sweatshirt and listening to the rain tapping on my windows as I tap on this keyboard.
Hey, I never said they were all wrong.