The other afternoon as my husband was running out to do some errands, he stopped by where I was working in the house to explain where he was going. After he'd kissed me goodbye and left the room I called out to him. Popping his head around the corner he sighed as I asked, "wait, now what are you doing?" I got 'the look' as he repeated his intentions again and he got the 'you know I don't listen when I'm working' speech, to which he laughed because he knew I was right. He knows me well enough to know how my mind works. Here're a few other things he's figured out through the years.
I'm best friends with the people in my mind...
Please know it's nothing personal. If we're hanging out you will also be hanging out with any number of sexy guys, scarred teens, and kick-butt heroines or heroes, that are maintaining temporary residency in the gray matter between my ears.
They can be pushy sometimes so don't be offended if you see me gaze into blank space and nod. I'm working things out with my people. It's normal. For me.
I'll be watching you...
I've always been a watcher of people. They amuse, horrify, terrify and alternately confuse the heck out of me. You learn so much about human nature by watching the way people interact.
For instance, the other day I'm at Panera eating and it's busy so there aren't a whole lot of tables. Across the restaurant from me, a woman took a seat at an empty booth by herself. After a few moments she left to fill her drink (her food had not yet arrived) taking her wallet and table buzzer with her and leaving the table empty - except for the umbrella she left under the table. While she was gone another woman came over, set her purse on the table and stood there - obviously holding the table as the rest of her party ordered. What I found interesting is the lady standing there was looking towards the registers and never saw the original woman's umbrella. Nor did she see the original woman when she walked up behind her, drink in hand. The first occupant sat down on the edge of the booth, set her things on the table and began playing on her phone, without a word to the woman standing there. Nothing! She didn't say "excuse me, this is my table" or "I'm sorry I was here first." It was only a few moments before an employee came with food and the lady standing turned, shocked to see the woman sitting there. It was the employee who ended up saying "she was sitting here" to the newcomer. The lady sitting never said a word, just kind of smiled and shrugged.
This whole interaction was perplexing to me. The fact is, I disliked the first woman the moment she sat down without saying anything to the woman standing. She allowed the woman standing there to be embarrassed - bc she was, it was clear to see - instead of simply being polite.
People watching gives me clues about someone based on their actions. One small action created a villain in my mind that day.
By the way - I'm also an eavesdropper, although it's a bit unintentional. If you talk loud enough that I can hear your conversation - and there's always one woman at the restaurant table next to us who loves to hear herself talk. LOUD - I will zone in on your conversation.
With my time. I've always been an outgoing person and I enjoy hanging with friends, but it happens less now than ever. I'm very selfish with how much of my free time I give away anymore. I have a husband, three kids and I have a career. Being a writer is not a hobby. It is my job and I take it seriously. I spend Monday through Friday working at writing just as I would if I were back in corporate America. No tennis games in the afternoon, no brunches with 'the girls' - I'm working and I love my job.
This also means I watch less television. Sure, I binge watch occasionally or I have my must-sees, but I no longer spend nights in front of the TV watching 'just any show'. Though I think my hubby likes this because while I go back to work after the kids are in bed, he watches his shows (all survival and car shows) without me griping about it.
Music will ignite my mind...
There's nothing like a good song to fire up my writing brain. I have a list of songs that have inspired ideas for stories I want to write. I'm an eclectic listener too. I'm also notorious for listening to the same song over and over and over. #sorrynotsorry