Cohabiting with Writers

April 9, 2015

If you have recently tied your wagon to a writer, my condolences for your sanity.  


I’m not sure how my boyfriend does it. There are a lot very normal behaviors for writers that by society standards aren’t. Like its normal for them to Google ways to kill without leaving a trace, so don't take it personally. I assure you that you’re probably fine to still sleep at night. Also, it’s probably best to practice phrases like, "No, it's okay, I didn't really want dinner tonight", and "I think pajama pants are sexy," and "Who cares if the house is a pigsty?"


These things are essential for living with writers.


The first big thing  understanding that writers work around a national coffee anthem. The smell of coffee will become constant reminder that you have a literary beast in your home.


Every Saturday and Sunday morning I wake up at 6:00 am, my boyfriend considers it an unreasonable hour, but that’s when the house is at its quietest. Everyone sleeps in on the weekends and that means I get to work on my writing uninterruptedly. As writers, we need solitude to work, its a struggle to find time in our busy lives to work on our art. That sometimes means your writer is probably waking up early before work or going to bed way after you’ve already fallen asleep with your iPhone in hand.


Dealing with a writer also means that the people your writer talks about, don’t exist. 


Writers have imaginary friends. Get over it, so does everyone else you just call them Twitter followers. Random outings turn into scouting all the time. Whenever I’m out with my boyfriend I think about where we are. I think to myself, man my character would love a place like this, my character would eat something like this, my character would say something like that.


That’s another thing, be prepared to find some familiar scenes in your writer’s “fiction.”


My boyfriend always says “It’s weird that the things I say or do get put into your stories.” To some extent maybe I see where it’s weird. Online I average about eight-teen thousand readers so the idea that they’re unknowingly laughing at your jokes and getting hot and heavy to some of our banter … yeah. Kind of weird. But that’s life with a writer. One moment you’re like, “oh wow I get to proof read!” And the next you’re like “Hey, that character is named after my best friend, and there’s that car I once owned, Hmmm, that fight about the-mother-in-law sounds really familiar.”


Its takes a big person to be with writer. Another thing to get accustom to, is that deadlines are focus makers and crabby creators.


This is where changes and stressors come into play, for me I get super grumpy if I make the time to write and something comes up. This is also around the time that my answers to simple questions like “What’s for dinner?” get short and snip-ish. Don’t be surprised if you come home and your writer is talking to the wall, the dog, or just lying on the floor. Creativity does not flow freely from the stressed and freaked out. I should know there are all kinds of changes happening in my life right now that have forced me to put my third book on hold until I can settle into the right frame of mind.


Another big deal breaker you should be aware of is that writers are hardcore book hoarders. 


Writers don’t just write books, they also collect them. For some reason reading and writing go hand in hand. I firmly believe if you don’t read you have no business writing. This means stacks of books everywhere. If you live with a writer, just get used to it. This is one battle you’ll never win.


Last but not least, the scariest thing about living with a writer is the identity crisis overload. We’re always afraid that our last book (article, devotion, blog post, etc) was the last one we have in us. This is followed by chaos, what will we do? What will become of us? How will we function? What will people think? Just give us a cup of coffee and cupcake. Offer a hug, tell us we’re great.


It helps, at least that’s the idea.


I hope that this blog will give you some kind of idea about what it’s like to have a writer in your home. If you’re still lost … May the muses have mercy on your soul. 

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