Suzann Ledbetter

Home Office Management  

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Adventures in Home Office Management    Back to Essays and Articles
  • DO find a place of your own in which to work. It isn't impossible to write amidst domestic chaos, but like a corporate CEO, you deserve a reserved parking space.
  • DO make it clear to family members that your space and its contents are YOURS and not to be borrowed. Then don't loan the darned stuff, thus breaking your own edict.
  • DO establish a work ethic and stick to it. If you don't respect the time set aside for work, your space, and your supplies, no one else will. Schmoozing with a neighbor on "your" time, then later, crabbing at the kids for interrupting your train of thought sends mixed signals.
  • DO refrain from putting cutesy messages on your answering machine. 99% of the calls may be for family members, but editors expect an business-like recording, not Darth Vader or a lisping toddler.
  • DO invest in a second, OFFICE ONLY telephone line and answering machine, if you can afford it. If that's too pricey, call your telephone company and inquire if Private Ring service is available in your area; akin to a second line, but cheaper. If your kids so much as touch your designated business phone, chastise severely. (see #2, above)
  • DO, above all other rooms in your household, keep your office space\supplies\projects organized. Okay, so try.
  • DO operate your writing career as the business it is. The term "home-office" only specifies locale. Many editors work part-time from their homes, but you'll never know from whence they've called unless they tell you. Follow their example.
  • DO make time to write--don't "steal" it. The latter implies that you're taking time from someone else; the former establishes that for you, writing is a priority. Ever hear of anyone "stealing" time to paint the house, change the oil in the car, or do the laundry?

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