There are so many good things about working at home (in my proverbial bunny slippers) that I can’t even tell you them all because you’d hate me and stop reading my blog. But sometimes there are disadvantages. There are about three days during the summer when I miss the climate-controlled cubicle farm because it is so damn hot in my house. And I also miss the free printing. But none of that outweighs the benefit of working in my pajamas, having a dog, and in general being a self-satisfied jerk who can work in a coffee shop on a Monday.
There are other downsides. One of them is that there is no one to talk you off the ledge. The fact that no one has emailed me about how many millions of dollars I’ll receive for teaching one class? They’re never going to pay me. Preparing for a small reading? I can’t dress myself, I am hideously awkward, and, well, my poems are OK. (I shit you not. I talk down on myself all the time, but one of the few things I am consistently confident about is my work. Not all of it, not all of the time; but no matter what’s going on in my head, something I’ve written doesn’t suck too much.)
So what do I do to keep from losing my mind? I rag [person redacted] by email. I check my reflection 100 times to make sure I have struck the right balance between professional and cool. I make sure my hair isn’t doing anything socially unacceptable. I pace. I eat. I read my poems out loud. (My kitchen has surprisingly good acoustics.) I go and read my poems in front of colleagues and students. It’s fine. What the hell were you so worried about anyway?
How do you gain perspective?