One of the perks of being a freelancer is the ability to work from home. Or so I have been told. The commute is non-existent and your basic work wardrobe can consist of whatever happens to be clean (or nothing, if that works for you), plus your schedule is flexible. Your pay schedule can be somewhat inconsistent, but you find ways to deal with it.
However, most authors of the magazine articles that tell you how great the freelance lifestyle is don’t work from home at the same time their neighbors are also home. I live in an old duplex with very thin walls, so I hear everything, which is not conducive to the work of a freelance copywriter. My neighbor is a nice hippie lady who stays at home with her toddler son during the day. And he’s a screamer. These are not the ordinary screams of a child who bumps into things throughout the course of his day. This is non-stop screaming all day long.
My previous neighbor didn’t have a toddler, but she did have loud friends who came over during the day to drink coffee and opine loudly about how they are true intellectuals who are living the dream and would never sell out by working full-time. These 30-something year old grad students also still live with their parents and had plenty of time to come over and hammer even more pictures onto her walls. She also had a puppy that she would leave at home during the day and it would scream for hours like it was being murdered.
I have really tried to figure out how to not let these distractions affect my work and the creative process, but it’s hard, especially since it’s hard for me to get back on track. I’ve even tried noise-cancelling headphones, but those can only do so much. Sigh.