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ACEnders
06-24-2008, 05:58 PM
I'm just curious, how many of you write while you're at you paying job?

Me, I completed my first manuscript and sent out queries. I've completed a rough second manuscript and am currently in the process of revising it, and I'm a little more than halfway through my third manuscript.

I've also critiqued several other manuscripts.

All while sitting at my desk and getting paid.

If you don't, why don't you? Are you just too busy, or are do your high work ethics keep you in line?

Claudia Gray
06-24-2008, 06:26 PM
I don't write at work. For me, it's a combination of being busy, fairly strict document-sharing protocols and the fact that the environment really isn't conducive to writing.

On slow days, I will sometimes do a bit of research, though.

auntybug
06-24-2008, 06:32 PM
I write at work too. I work alone & my days are super slow. When I was hired, my boss said, "Bring a book." I write them instead.

Bubastes
06-24-2008, 06:34 PM
I write at work too. I work alone & my days are super slow. When I was hired, my boss said, "Bring a book." I write them instead.

I want your job. Any tips on how to find a job where I can write at work?

ACEnders
06-24-2008, 06:41 PM
I used to be a receptionist. I didn't even have a computer! I sat there and handwrote many a false starts that ended up in the trash, and I went through about two books every week.

Now, I have a bit more to do than that...and thankfully a computer to type my manuscripts instead of handwriting them.

Auntybug - I want that job too!

Red-Green
06-24-2008, 06:45 PM
One word: University. I work as an office manager for an academic department at a university. My job takes me about 10 hours a week. I spend the other 30 hours writing, blogging, chatting, and farting around.

Momento Mori
06-24-2008, 06:47 PM
ACEnders:
I'm just curious, how many of you write while you're at you paying job?

Nope. I'll surf the web and check out AW whilst I'm working if things are a bit slow or I'm twiddling my thumbs waiting for typing to come back etc, but I'm very careful to take my writing outside to a local cafe during my lunch hour. I'm not paid to work on my own manuscript during work hours and I'd regard it as dishonest to be doing so whilst accepting my salary.

MM

drachin8
06-24-2008, 07:06 PM
It is rarely slow in my office, and I have to keep all my ongoing tasks loaded in my brain, so switching to writing tends to counter that (I am a horrid multi-tasker). It does sometimes get a bit slow, in which case I have done a bit of research or some poetry. Since January of this year, though, it has mostly just been crazy insane, enough that it has actually affected my writing at home. Downloading all the work stuck in my head so I can upload my WIP is killing me right now.


:(

-Michelle

DeleyanLee
06-24-2008, 07:10 PM
I don't at this job, but I have at others--always with the boss' knowledge and blessing. As long as I was interruptable for money work, they just wanted me to look busy and typing away on Word and occasionally muttered under my breath acheived that.

This job's entirely too hectic to do anything more than occasionally pop in here for a mental health break during the day. But I'd love to get paid to write again.

Starwise
06-24-2008, 07:25 PM
I'm right with you on that. My most recent work, THE CAIN LETTERS, I wrote mostly at work. Took me about six months to finish. I'm trying not to write nearly as much during work, because it does set me back a lot here. I have deadlines.

sheadakota
06-24-2008, 07:39 PM
I'm a nurse in an Intensive Care Unit- sometimes I don't even have time to pee let alone write! But on the flip side, I only work 3 days a week and write on my days off.

willietheshakes
06-24-2008, 07:50 PM
(runs outside, checking sky for portentous thunderclouds)

Never ever.

(waits for inevitable lightning strike)

BlueLucario
06-24-2008, 07:54 PM
Does school count? I always write my stories during class. When class gets boring, or there's no assignments left to be done, I just write away! Or you can always see me multitasking, doing classwork whilst writing fiction. If you can just take a five minute strecher and write something. An idea isn't going to wait for you to write it down, so if a light bulb pops up, get something out. :D

You guys are so lucky to have work. Don't ask why.

Shara
06-24-2008, 08:05 PM
I agree with Momento Mori. I am paid a salary to do my job; it would seem dishonest to write during the time I am being paid to work.

I also believe it makes my life a whole lot less complicated if I keep the day job and the writing completely separate entities.

(That doesn't mean I don't occasionally take a peek at AW on quiet days, however)

Shara

ink wench
06-24-2008, 08:43 PM
My job is often drought or drown. Some days I have almost nothing to do. Others, I have to do 3-days worth of work in one. It all depends. On slow days, there's only so much make-work I can give myself so I might take some time to write (I often get stuck working longer hours than I can get paid for, so I don't feel bad). I'm also required to be in the office for 9 hours each day, but can only charge time for 8 (the joy of being pseudo-salaried). That extra one hour is supposed to be a lunch break, but no one cares what I do with it. So if I eat fast, I can write (or surf AW).

Blondchen
06-24-2008, 08:58 PM
I do a lot of my writing, research, querying and printing out of submission materials while at work. I have one of those jobs like Ink Wench where Monday-Wednesday are usually insane and Thursday-Friday are usually dead.

Of course, I wouldn't be able to get away with it if I wasn't (a) really good at what I do and (b) highly placed at my job.

It's a perk. I'll admit it.

Tasmin21
06-24-2008, 09:01 PM
I am usually at least pondering writing stuff while I'm working. I've been known to jot down inspirations during meetings and such. But I try to save the actual writing portion for my lunch breaks. (sometimes, this means I have to type REALLY fast to get it all down in time)

Red-Green
06-24-2008, 09:01 PM
If I were actually shirking my working to write, I might feel "dishonest" as some have opined. The fact is--my job doesn't have enough work for me to do. I'm required to be physically present 40 hours a week, but there just aren't 40 hours of work to do. Unless I work reeeeeeeallllllly slowly. Of course, it explains why until me they had a hard time keeping anyone in this position--boredom.

Dawnstorm
06-24-2008, 09:03 PM
I can't write at work. I do have plenty of time (night porter at a hotel), but the idea that could be interrupted keeps me from focussing properly. When I'm "in a scene" I need to go forward. If I'm kicked out, it's quite possible that I lose what I've written so far, in that I don't find the right approach to continue. (I was struggling through a scene once, when I was interrupted by a phone call. All the time writing was lost. I ended up deleting that scene.)

DamaNegra
06-24-2008, 09:15 PM
I write during boring classes, or classes that are so simple I don't need to pay attention to pass. So I take my laptop, spend the whole hour typing, ocassionaly look up to the professor and every two or three classes answer a particularly difficult question no one seems to know to reassure the teacher that yes, I am learning something.

ACEnders
06-24-2008, 09:17 PM
If I were actually shirking my working to write, I might feel "dishonest" as some have opined. The fact is--my job doesn't have enough work for me to do. I'm required to be physically present 40 hours a week, but there just aren't 40 hours of work to do. Unless I work reeeeeeeallllllly slowly. Of course, it explains why until me they had a hard time keeping anyone in this position--boredom.

That's how it is. My boss has never actually told me she knows I write, but I think she does. She HAS told me as long as my work gets done, she doesn't care what I do. And I'm damn good at my job. Work gets done, on time, and in excellent condition.

Then I write.

lucky8
06-24-2008, 09:23 PM
I'm mostly temping at the moment so it depends on the job. Today I managed to get a good 1500 words done on my main piece. I always try to write during my lunch break although today I was pretty exhausted so I probably only got 3-400 words done on my side project which I'm writing in long hand.

Captshady
06-24-2008, 09:27 PM
I edit my butt off while at work, but haven't written anything from scratch ... yet.

Phaeal
06-24-2008, 09:28 PM
I'm on the books for five hours a day, but I hang out for eight. So three of those hours are all mine, apart from answering the phone or doing the occasional emergency job. It's one of the perks I claim for being overeducated and underpaid. ;)

jennifer75
06-24-2008, 09:29 PM
While I haven't written since the beginning of the year - almost half of my WIP (I think I'm at about 60K) was writtin here at my desk at work.



sidenote: the other half was written at home. :P

Mr Flibble
06-24-2008, 09:51 PM
I am usually at least pondering writing stuff while I'm working. I've been known to jot down inspirations during meetings and such.

That's me too. Although my friend, beta reader and immediate supervisor inadvertantly told everyone at work today that I write ( and showed the MS I'd given him!!). Now even my regional manager knows. So now when they see me scribbling...I may not be able to get away with it so much :( On the plus side, when I told them what it was about they all said 'That sounds cool!' Phew.

Madison
06-24-2008, 10:01 PM
I write all the time at school (I guess that should be past tense since school is over). Somehow I can always get As even when I don't pay attention - in advanced classes too! Not sure if that skill will transfer to college... I'll find out next year

Sassee
06-24-2008, 11:33 PM
My habits fell into the "unethical" category a while ago. That's all imma say... heh.

Storm Dream
06-24-2008, 11:54 PM
In order to do my work, someone's got to hand me an assignment. So if my coworkers haven't turned anything in, I'm free to write. None of the managing editors have had a problem with it. Frankly, it keeps my mind much sharper than just playing on teh interwebz.

Ken
06-25-2008, 12:40 AM
in addition to some steady freelance gigs, I temp, too,
and always write on the job.
Usually I'll write 3hrs out of the 8 I'm there.
Contrast this to a job I had for a few years in the editorial dept of a magazine.
Never once did I write on the job, committing all my time to the tasks I was assigned.
And my reward: the company wound up going bankrupt :-(

Harper K
06-25-2008, 02:40 AM
I used to do long-term temp receptionist positions where I could write or read for most of the day. My bosses usually invited me to do just that. It was great. My best job for non-jobby pursuits was working the front desk at a motorcycle shop. There was no computer, so no chance of getting distracted by the Internet. Yay! I brought a notebook and a couple of novels, and I usually read a book a day and wrote a couple pages too. This actually pleased my supervisor. She was like, "Wow, I was afraid you'd be bored sitting up here."

At my current job I'm usually much too busy to write, though I always send my WIPs to myself in Gmail in case I have any extra time. "Extra time" usually means my lunch hour. As someone else said, I usually have some scrap paper handy in case a writing idea comes to mind during the day.

James81
06-25-2008, 03:03 AM
No "sometimes" option, no care. :tongue

MrWrite
06-25-2008, 03:12 AM
I have sneakily written a few times at work but am more likely to browse this site when I get a chance at work!

The Lady
06-25-2008, 04:11 AM
God no. I'm a teacher. Every minute is accounted for. The plus side is good holidays I guess.

blueobsidian
06-25-2008, 05:42 AM
No I don't. When I am at my day job I am being paid for my work. If I don't do my job while I'm on the clock, I don't keep my day job. Since I am a fan of my health insurance I am not going to cheat my boss out of what she is paying for.

Quossum
06-25-2008, 06:41 PM
I'm a teacher, too, and I have to concur with The Lady's "no time!" statement. However, I usually write during my lunch break, and every once in a great while if I'm not swamped during my conference period (rare) and I'm also particularly hot on a scene, I might write a little. Needless to say the net nanny there blocks things like blogs and message boards.

During hideously boring teacher workshops and useless meetings, though, watch out! That notebook I'm writing in sure makes it appear that I'm taking diligent notes...

--Q

TPCSWR
06-26-2008, 02:22 AM
I write all the time at school (I guess that should be past tense since school is over). Somehow I can always get As even when I don't pay attention - in advanced classes too! Not sure if that skill will transfer to college... I'll find out next year

I also somehow manage to maintain As and A-s, if I didn't I'd start paying more attention.

To save me having to type it up later I can now touch-type on a graphics calculator (better than I can on a computer, actually, though not faster). Then I go home and put it onto the computer.

In classes where I don't have a reason to have the calculator out I read an ebook on my mp4, which just happens to be my watch. As far as the teachers are concerned I'm daydreaming while staring at my arm. Oh, and a big thanks to Project Gutenburg(sp?).:Thumbs:

Stormhawk
06-26-2008, 04:02 AM
Occasionally, when there's nothing to do, I'll pull open a document. I do make up for it though, by being available over Yahoo! Messenger outside of work hours. :)

Danger Jane
06-26-2008, 06:13 AM
At school...I did whatever passed the time. Writing usually wasn't a good idea; it was never good enough to keep.

At work...nope. Either it's super busy-crazy and there are 20 kids beating each other up, or there aren't any (I work in the babysitting room at a gym) and when there isn't a single kid there, I'll pull out a book, but I put it away the second someone shows up with their toddler.

Pat~
06-26-2008, 06:22 AM
.

Now, I have a bit more to do than that...and thankfully a computer to type my manuscripts instead of handwriting them.



Hi ACE, I work from home so it's not an issue. One thing you might want to consider, though, is that legally any manuscript you create on a "work" computer belongs to the firm you work for--even if it has nothing to do with their field. So, be sure to stay in their good graces concerning the issue. There was one poster here who got into legal wrangling when she was let go, and they wouldn't give her her computer files.

ACEnders
06-26-2008, 06:58 AM
Hi ACE, I work from home so it's not an issue. One thing you might want to consider, though, is that legally any manuscript you create on a "work" computer belongs to the firm you work for--even if it has nothing to do with their field. So, be sure to stay in their good graces concerning the issue. There was one poster here who got into legal wrangling when she was let go, and they wouldn't give her her computer files.

Thanks. I actually did know that. I also save everything on my flash drive and/or email it back and forth through gmail. But thank you for the warning. I think that's crazy that that can be true.

cletus
06-26-2008, 06:33 PM
At my current job I've done a bit of fiction editing and written some non-fiction. I've done loads of research on the internet and sit here most days thinking up ideas and plot twists. Most of my lunch hours are spent writing in the car with my AlphaSmart3000 while I eat my sandwiches.

Gynn
06-27-2008, 02:56 AM
I'm not at a desk anymore, but when I was, I use to jot down ideas while working, but not actually write. It's too distracting.

Faolmor
06-27-2008, 07:09 AM
I try, but I can't concentrate. I need to be at home in the (ha!) peace and quiet.

Jodotha
06-27-2008, 08:06 AM
Oddly enough, I write better at work than I do at home. Haven't yet figured out why, though. That is, I spend almost every lunch hour either writing, researching, or some other activity related to my WIP. I desperatly wish I could write while actually on company time buuut I really do have enough to do. That, and I have a strong desire not to get fired. I DO keep a little notepad next my mouse in case I need to jot down a line or idea. My work can be mind-numbing, so I do get to spend much of the day thinking about my story. Can't really complain, at least I get to listen to my ipod while at work. :-D Still, I admit a twinge of jealousy for those of you with "downtime" jobs...heh

lfraser
06-30-2008, 07:59 AM
Not only do I not have a spare moment for fiction writing in any work day, it would never occur to me to do that. I get paid rather well for what I do and would hate to lose my job, but more than that I would consider it stealing. That's just me, though, To each, his or her own.

But I'm curious -- who has the kind of job in which there is so little work and so little supervision that you could write all day and not get canned?

ynoirb
06-30-2008, 10:50 AM
My currently WIP has bounced from work to home and back via email - since my current job requires no thought whatsoever it seems to work okay :)

cletus
06-30-2008, 02:01 PM
But I'm curious -- who has the kind of job in which there is so little work and so little supervision that you could write all day and not get canned?
I used to work at a satellite teleport. When doing the night or weekend shifts you would be there on your own for 12 hours with only about an hours worth of gauranteed routine work. For the other 11 hours, if something broke, you fixed it. Otherwise you did whatever you wanted.

Lady Cat
06-30-2008, 05:59 PM
Many years ago when I worked as a receptionist, I used to bring my hand written first drafts in to work to type them out. This was back in the stone age when everyone still used type-writers :D

When I worked the midnight shift in a call centre it would have been the perfect opportunity to get some writing done, however our outgoing email access was blocked and there was no way to save or print anything. The best I was able to manage was some illicit surfing (we had a list of "approved" websites and neither AW nor the Project Gutenberg were approved - needless to say I surfed there anyway).

jgold
06-30-2008, 07:55 PM
I wish I had a desk job so that I could do that--I'm constantly on the salesfloor, with no time to write. I need to get out of retail.

I bring my laptop to work every day so that I can write on my lunch breaks. I've found that I write best then for some reason, because I can't go online and obsessively check my email every five minutes. There are too many distractions at home.

My first book was written entirely on lunch breaks.:)

ACEnders
06-30-2008, 08:13 PM
But I'm curious -- who has the kind of job in which there is so little work and so little supervision that you could write all day and not get canned?

I'm an admin. assistant. There's only so much work, and when it's done, I write.

also, when i was a receptionist, I had so much time. All I did, literally, was answer phones. So I wrote.

lfraser
07-01-2008, 11:30 AM
Wow. I had no idea people had jobs that came with so much free time. To me an hour that someone pays me for is an hour that should be filled with work. I've only ever had jobs that were like that, non-stop, all day. If I'm not on the phone I'm catching up on paperwork or I'm in my car going from on site to another. Most days I don't even get a lunch break. At my last job I worked flat out for between ten and fourteen hours a day, got home at around 10:30 or so, read for an hour before crashing, and got up and did it all again the next day. I quit that job because there was no time for anything, let alone writing. On the weekends I was so bagged I couldn't think. The job I have now is better. I'm usually home by six and have a couple of hours of free time.

dgiharris
07-01-2008, 08:38 PM
I normally do my AW posts during my lunch break.

I also find that if I get some time at work (usually lunch or friday afternoon) I will write at work.

Mel...

C.M. Daniels
07-01-2008, 09:22 PM
On days like today, when there is absolutely nothing for me to do other than look pretty at my desk, I'll bust out a ms, comment here, or surf.

At this job, sometimes, keeping busy is keeping sane.

Karen Duvall
07-01-2008, 09:27 PM
I work at home as a graphic designer, so being busy varies from day to day, week to week. My job sometimes interrupts my writing time, but I make my own hours so a little interruption is easily tolerated.

Storm Dream
07-01-2008, 09:46 PM
Not only do I not have a spare moment for fiction writing in any work day, it would never occur to me to do that. I get paid rather well for what I do and would hate to lose my job, but more than that I would consider it stealing. That's just me, though, To each, his or her own.

But I'm curious -- who has the kind of job in which there is so little work and so little supervision that you could write all day and not get canned?

I am a copy editor for a magazine. I can't do my work until someone hands me an article. Typically the guys will go for days and not hand anything in (we assume they're busily working) and then there will be a flood of stuff.

I have my days where I am working straight through. But then I have days where I'm not doing anything and writing keeps me from surfing the web all day, or twiddling my thumbs, or watching pr0n or something. I've gone to various staff members trolling for work from time to time and get told to "go home" or "write" or "play on the web." So...

My supervisors don't seem to care; I'm good at my job and it always gets done, so they give us free rein, which I appreciate. I have many days where I wish I was constantly busy, but that's just not how we operate here.

Clair Dickson
07-02-2008, 05:51 AM
Heh. I'm an alternative high school teacher-- BUT I only write during the independent study courses (kind of like a study hall) that I oversee. The kids are working, and there's not much I can do most of the time, so I write.

Hubby likes to comment on how I'm actually getting paid to write.

My boss and my colleagues know that I write.