Have you ever wondered what writers wear when writing? Do they dress up as if going to a day job at the office? (And might I just add that writing IS a day job—as well as a night job, and an early morning job—and I’m pretty sure most writers have their own offices too.)
I’m busy reading a manuscript for my wonderful crit partner, Jan Elder. The hero of this story is a famous historical romance author, and we’re talking Nicholas Sparks famous … Karen Kingsbury famous. Now, this writer hero has an unusual quirk when it comes to his craft—not only is some of the furniture in his secluded home a blast from the past, but this man likes to dress up in nineteenth century garb as he writes his stories with an antique dip pen on cream-colored paper at his antique desk.
I know of some authors who like to hand write their first draft. I’m not one of them. I’m pretty sure there are others who might also dress for the occasion to better connect with their characters. Again, not me. I’m more of a … well, I’ll tell you about that a little later. First, I’d like to show you something.
Oh my, when I stumbled across this photograph and memory on Facebook last week, it not only made me think about Jan’s story I’m reading, complete with a moose, it brought back wonderful memories. For the record, in case you’re wondering, this photo isn’t me on a writing day (even though it could be). I snapped the pic a few years ago on National Slipper Day when I still worked a day job in the corporate world.
National Slipper Day is celebrated on the second Friday of May every year, and it’s the day workers in South Africa get to kick off their high heels (or low ones in my case because my days of tottering around supported by only a narrow piece of plastic are long gone), and slip their feet into the comfort of their favorite nighttime footwear and pad about the office corridors for the next eight hours. Even scholars set their school shoes aside for a day to run about the classrooms and playgrounds with unicorns or emojis or animal claws adorning their feet. The best thing though, is that by supporting this wonderful initiative, the whole country gets to help children suffering from serious and terminal illnesses make their dreams come true.
I’ve always loved this one particular day in the office when we got to be just a little bit crazy.
After I gave up my day job to write full time, pretty much every day became a slipper day (or socks day, unless it’s summer, then it’s just a barefoot day). It also became a sweatpants day, a baggy jersey day, a no makeup day, a bad hair day. Oops, and I guess I just let the cat out of the bag about this writer’s work attire. Oh well, I’m far more concerned these days about what my characters wear and how they look to pay attention to my own appearance. After all, nobody sees me beavering away at my computer from the time hubby leaves for work until he gets home.
I’m so glad that God does not look at the outward appearance but at the heart, otherwise I’d be up the creek without the proverbial paddle.
While researching information about Slipper Day for this blog, I discovered that sadly, but not surprisingly, Slipper Day was postponed this year due to the coronavirus lockdown, and along with it, the fun and camaraderie of this event. But I was heartened to also read that the organizers of this Reach for a Dream initiative decided that dreams can’t be locked down, and so they held a Virtual Slipper Week … this week! However, even though I’m finally back home in my office, in my favorite Finnish slippers (or I could dig out my Hungarian Moose/Reindeer ones), I wasn’t able to join this virtual event because I couldn’t get the online registration to work (and then I completely forgot). But I did wear slippers and socks most days this week, except for Monday when I flew home after over five months away. I definitely didn’t want anything to mess up the reunion with my hubby, because one of two things could’ve happened if I showed up at Cape Town International airport in my slippers: either security would’ve thought I was an escaped COVID patient, or I could’ve added fuel to the rumor …
If you’re an author, why not share a little about your writing garb or quirks. And readers, we’d love to hear all about your favorite reading attire or corner. Or both.