The House Guest and the Audiobook Narrator


This has been a crazy few weeks for me. I have to keep reminding myself that I only just got back from vacation a few weeks ago! With work and website issues and other things piling up, it’s been busy. And it would have been even busier had I not given myself a sanity check last week. You see, I was supposed to have a friend stay over. My friend was going to Emerald City ComiCon, and would be crashing at our house for nearly a week.

Having house guests when you work from home is not ideal. When your work space is your home, and is suddenly filled with distractions, it makes it very difficult to be productive. And for my job, I need quiet. 100% silence. When I record an audiobook I turn off the heat and the refrigerator, and my dog has known since he was a puppy that when I go into the TARDIS he has to be quiet (my chatty cat is another matter).

I can’t work while I have visitors in the house. Not when I’m recording audiobooks. It’s a distraction. Audiobooks take a tremendous amount of concentration, and I’m in the booth for several hours a day, with breaks every 60-90 minutes. I’m exhausted during those breaks. Breaks are for hydration and meditation. Definitely not for entertaining.

Previously, every time I’ve had someone stay with me, I’ve made sure it wasn’t while I was on a tight deadline. I would shift my schedule to spend time with my guests. But when you have someone staying with you for a week, that’s just not practical. I can’t take more than 2-3 days off. I run my own business. Originally when my friend had mentioned the convention my schedule was pretty flexible. But things change, and as a matter-of-fact a really big job (that I won’t go into details about because it might not happen) came along that required me to shift my entire schedule. Suddenly I had no time, because I needed to get ahead on the book I was currently working on, so I could schedule this project. And for a few days, I thought I could juggle entertaining while recording.

Thankfully last week, I realised this was too much. I can’t work with someone else in the house. I was stressed about this major job. I really didn’t need the added hassle of having visitors. Having someone in your personal space morning and night, for days in a row, is stressful. Then there’s the planned dinners. Driving people around. It’s a lot of work. So now my friend is staying at a hotel. We’ll still be able to see each other, but when I’m able to make the time. .

So what does this mean for future visitors? I’m not sure. I’m thinking I may have to implement a three-night rule. Or warn people that they need to set aside money for a hotel just in case. What I do know is that audiobook narrators and house guests really don’t mix.

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