Tuesday 17 March 2020

Welcome to working from home, everyone! by Tracy Darnton

Authors are no strangers to self-isolation and working from home. We can offer pearls of wisdom about changing out of your jimjams, getting fresh air, using a standing desk, how to structure your coffee breaks and how to live without an IT department, HR or accounts department. 

Some of us will be having to share our already limited workspaces with partners exiled from their rapidly closing offices. I’m working on some induction training to outlaw excessively loud telephone calls and a whole loud of etiquette around use of the big desk and dining table. Special training will be required for my new co-worker about how to clear all the washing and ironing without breaking concentration. 

My fantasy workspace - not my rather messy actual one
I know that compromise will be required so I’m prepared to bring in a tea rota, a water cooler for casual conversation and dress-up Friday. However, only I can use any of my bookshop mug collection. No one touches my pencil cases but me.

I suppose we’ll have to form a committee and hold some pointless meetings just for the hell of it.

Please let this all be back to normal before the office Christmas party. Avoiding an office Christmas party is one of the few benefits of freelancing. 

Good luck everyone. See you all on the other side. 

Tracy Darnton is the author of The Truth About Lies. Her next novel, The Rules, is out in July. The Rules is about a girl on the run from her prepper father and the effects of continually preparing for disaster. She is not enjoying this period of unexpected immersive research.


Penny Dolan said...

"She is not enjoying this period of unexpected immersive research." I did love this quiet link in your book promo section, Tracy. Good luck with the title.
A very relevant post too.

Good wishes, all, with setting up those co-worker ground rules. :-)

Moira Butterfield said...

I moved my stuff home from my freelance shared office today. It was unexpectedly very emotional as I picked up the office plants to put in the boot of the car. I got home and have been staring at the same paragraph for about 3 hours. Plus the neighbour has their radio on all day, it seems. I guess mentally I will settle down but my head's not in the game right now. Good luck all.

Claire Fayers said...

Good luck everyone. I'm missing my coffee shop write-ins with friends. My husband will be joining me working from home tomorrow. He has his own office upstairs and I'm downstairs so our paths won't cross much, but it's going to take a while to get used to having someone else in the house all day.

Anne Booth said...

Good luck to everyone too. I am a bit under the weather so can't quite focus on work either, so am in social isolation and trying not to beat myself up for not working.Maybe we have to be kind to ourselves when our 'head's not in the game', as Moira says.

Andrew Preston said...

Of course, there are other aspects to the sharing of space.

Only yesterday, in a discussion about work colleagues, someone remarked....

"The lad that sat next to me as I worked on Friday talked utter nonsense and proceeded to sh*t himself mid conversation and carry on as if it didn't happen. Working from home has its drawbacks, especially with toddlers involved. ".