work hours

If you read this regularly, you’ll come to see that I tend to post these things deep into the night, when most of the sensible world is asleep. There’s a reason for that. I’m a night owl. Always was. I used to blame it on the fact that when you grow up in a two-bedroom house with ten people, late night is the only time you can control the TV. Then it was my nursing career. My favorite shifts in the ER were evenings and nights. The very best? 5PM to 3AM. That’s generally when all the fun stuff happens–and the supervisory staff at home with their families instead of getting in my way.
But when I quit to write–well, I quit because I burned out. I found myself backing a doctor against a wall with a scalpel in my hand and realized I just wasn’t having fun anymore–but I was writing full time, I realized that I had no more excuses. I simply don’t function in the morning. When I was still working they’d literally have a pool going to see if I showed up with my uniform on inside out.
Now, it’s a simpler issue. No matter how hard I try–and believe me, when deadlines loom, I try like a trojan–the only thing that happens if I try and use the computer before at least 3PM, is I sit at the desk until drool collects in my lap. I can’t even answer the phone before noon. Usually because I’ve been up til 4 or 5AM, and am just too sleepy to be coherent. No one in New York is allowed to call me before then. It’s not that I’m surly. I just can’t remember that I’ve talked to anyone(if my husband calls, he makes me tape a note to the bathroom mirror with his message).
I tried again today. Yes, I have deadlines, and my husband is out of town, which means my schedule is my own. Drool collected, I clutched my thesaurus like a liferaft as I struggled for words I knew perfectly well yesterday, and nothing happened. Nothing. On the other hand, it’s about 1:30AM, and since Midnight I’ve edited two chapters and written five new pages. And I”m just getting warmed up.
So, while some of my best friends are morning people, I’d much rather bay at the moon. Or have my characters do it.

One thought on “work hours”

  1. Bibi says:

    I knew I liked you. Another night owl. My brain is in neutral until it starts to get dark out. Then, suddenly, I’m in high gear. I, too, worked swings in a hospital, on a neuro ward. Not quite as much excitement as the ER, be we probably had a higher percentage of demented patients. ;+)

    I’m hitting the bookstore tomorrow and will have your name, both of them, clutched in my hot little fist.

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