In my previous life I often wished I could work from home. Travelling to the office everyday, the press of rush hour, sitting in a room with people who barely spoke to you, cups of tea that never quite tasted right – surely I would get more work done in the comfort of my own home?
I used to listen, green with envy, to those lucky work colleagues who had somehow managed to wangle the elusive work-from-home option. The closest I ever came was flexi-time, starting at 7 so I could finish at 3 but it wasn’t quite as magical.
Now I work from home 24/7. And it’s so hard I long for that journey to work, that little piece of desk that belongs to me and maybe if I brought my own kettle it wouldn’t too bad. When reading On Writing by Stephen King I was struck by his urging to find a nook to write in. A place to call your own where you could go and deliver your daily word count. Where no-one would bother you and you could achieve all your writing goals. Then I realised King is a man and can quite easily craft such a space. It’s not so easy for a woman. Especially when writer comes after care-giver and housewife.
Perhaps it is my fault. Perhaps I don’t delegate effectively. But you have to agree there are certain things that you find yourself doing before you can sit down to write, right? On waking I have to work out – it’s the only time in the day I have to look after my fitness. Next I need to get my child up, dressed, fed and taken to school – walking the long way home so I can achieve my elusive 10,000 steps per day. Upon return there are the usual morning jobs like making the bed and doing the breakfast dishes – I try to remember to eat at this point, my blood sugar will thank me later. This is also the time to make those important phone calls, check my email, update my social media, diary, calendar then send frenzied messages to people I forgot to speak to yesterday.
Now I have an hour before I have to pick my angel-face child up from nursery so I’d better sit down and write like my very life depended on it. By the time I’ve found and unpacked my notes, done that blasted software update, made a cup of tea and sat down to work it’s time to put it all away again. I can’t leave it out because there’s only one table and I need it for eating, colouring, painting, glitter, learning, cars, trains and play-doh.
Next is lunch. Then stories and tidying up and ‘Mummy will you play with me.’ Afternoon jobs like going to the post office, prepping dinner, doing ironing – they all start to creep up on me ignoring my protests that I really really really need to get some work done. Before I know it, it’s welcome home husband time and let’s talk about our day, eat dinner, bath the child, tidy-up, washing and plaintive requests for ‘Come sit with me Mummy.’ How can you possibly say no?
The day is gone. The evening awaits. The hubster requires tending and there’s that TV show I’ve been trying to watch for the past four years. I can write tomorrow – right? After all, I do work from home.
About The Gaia Effect
The Gaia Effect
by Claire Buss
Publisher: New Generation Publishing
Publication Date: December 21, 2016
Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Post-Apocalyptic
In City 42 Corporation look after you from cradle to grave. They protect you from the radiation outside the wall. They control the food, the water, the technology and most important of all, the continuation of the human race. Kira and Jed Jenkins were lucky enough to win Collection but when their friends start falling pregnant naturally, everything changes. How long has Corporation been lying to them? Is it really toxic outside the wall? As the group comes to terms with the changes in their lives they discover there is a much more powerful and ancient force at work, trying to bridge the gap between man and nature.
About the Author
Claire Buss is a science fiction/fantasy writer currently based in Barking, Essex. She wanted to be Lois Lane when she grew up but work experience at her local paper was eye-opening. Instead Claire went on to work in a variety of admin roles for over a decade but never felt quite at home. An avid reader, baker and pinterest addict Claire won second place in the Barking and Dagenham Pen to Print writing competition in 2015 with The Gaia Effect and set her writing career in motion.