“It’s not work—it’s a way of life.”
If they’d had my size in stock I would have bought the John Deere t-shirt that crowed this bit of wisdom this weekend. My husband and I were enjoying some Saturday-morning shopping at a farming supply store. You can find anything from honey-glazed peanuts to horse antibiotics in such stores—along with free popcorn. I did manage to buy myself the pair of pink John Deere logo gardening gloves you see in this post’s photo. I thought they’d make a nice compliment to the pink cap the dealer gave me when we bought our new rider mower last year.
Last week I ran into a couple of engineers I used to work with at a large defense contractor here in the city. They know I left the cubicle world to do what I do now and one of them said he couldn’t imagine “being up against deadlines like you are so much of the time.”
I couldn’t resist smiling because my deadlines aren’t any different than their deadlines. They have projects they’re working on. They have customers who are counting on them getting that project done in the timeframe they promised they would.
How is that any different from what I do?
I do recognize that it is the idea of the words themselves that terrify people. Having to write words—a letter—a thank you note—a sympathy note—or the description of your latest project so that you can obtain funding to carry on with it seems to just scare the crap out of people.
It is an unfortunate state, and I while I do have empathy for such a state, it is just the opposite for me. It is the thought of not ever being able to write any more words that scares the stuffing out of me. Like anything, of course, it’s all about our perspective.
I have an aunt and a writing friend who are both battling serious vision problems right now. The thought of not being able to read for themselves, or write their own words is terrifying them. I gave myself a kick in the pants for whining just because I lost a few hours of writing time due to routine eye exam dilation the other day.
Of course the minute I read those 8 words on that t-shirt the other morning, I immediately thought of a working writer’s life, because I can’t help it. Nor do I want to.