Writing from Home. What does that conjure up? Conference calls in your pyjamas? 2-hour lunches? Unlimited holidays? Such perks are every would-be writer's dream but the reality of few professional writers.
The truth is, we tend to glamorize the notion of working at home. The obvious advantages seldom outweigh the demanding but unique challenge of being your own boss. Although, once you lay down a few house rules, writing from home is manageable and when running smoothly there's nothing quite like it.
Here are some suggestions from a writer who has written 100s of print journalism pieces and radio talks, dozens of short stories, some radio plays and documetaries and ten books - both non-fiction and fiction - all from home.
1. Create a Workspace - initially even having your own corner will work
2. Stick to your Schedule - it keeps you focussed
3. Make your loved ones and friends stick to your Schedule - you have to learn to say 'NO' loud and clear
4. Work on more than one project - after a few hours it's beneficial to switch activity to another part of the brain
5. Network - working from home can be lonely. Make contact with other writers
6. Take Breaks - a quick walk around the park or even a good stretch work wonders for creativity
7. Nurture your Creativity - creative exercises are of benefit during a busy period
8. Rest, Exercise and Eat well - staying fit is critical to good health and good health is critical to creativity
9. Celebrate your Successes - treat yourself to a nice something - like a good massage
10. Have a Life - if you want to write you have to live
The verse below is penned by John Fitzgerald who has successfully cracked the writing from home problem...
Let silence be a canvas,
paint a simple word,
and color be a feeling
the artist’s brush can stir,
then take a sheet of paper,
pen a line in ink
let the image picture
as you write and think.
Above all, enjoy your good fortune,