In a Zombie’s Shoes: A Firsthand Look at a Professional Freelance Zombie

Welcome to Writer Rants–where every Friday a writer just lets loose on whatever the heck is bugging them this week. Enjoy.

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Okay, so zombies are cool. You watch them every week on The Walking Dead. You dressed like one for Halloween. You pretend to be one sometimes just for kicks, slowly shuffling with your arms extended and groaning kind of like Frankenstein’s monster. Sure, it’s fun to watch zombies or pretend to be a zombie — keyword “pretend.” But what if you’re actually becoming a zombie? Is it cool then? I wake up and wonder if maybe I bit the whole town last night.

Work-from-home freelance content writers like me can work whenever they want. That tends to make those 9 to 5-ers a little jealous, but in reality, those 9 to 5-ers put in their hours and then they get off work and relax the rest of the night, plus they get the whole weekend off. When do I get off work? Never!

I work day and night, writing until I go to bed, waking up and going right back to my desk. It’s 11:30 pm on a Saturday night as I write this…now it’s Sunday morning as I finish it. One day melds seamlessly into the next. Is it Monday? Is it Friday? Does it matter?

Sometimes, I don’t leave the house for days at a time. It’d be easy to mistake me for a zombie on first glance during days like these. My hair is ratty (because who needs to shower when I have nowhere to go?), I have dark circles under my eyes (from a lack of sleep, plus who needs makeup when I have nowhere to go?) and I have a vacant expression (from lack of sleep and Churning Out Articles Syndrome). When I get up from my butt-indented chair, I walk with a limp (because my leg gets cramped from sitting for so long). I have rips in my shirt and blood dripping down the front…okay, maybe I’m getting carried away here.

When I keep up the one-day-into-the-next routine, my mind feels glazed over. I can barely write; I can barely think. I just sit in front of the computer with drool drizzling out of my mouth. Maybe I do write, but from behind a fog, while I sit in amazement that I’m even capable of forming coherent sentences.

Sometimes, writing is like those days when I’m driving and suddenly I find myself at my destination, wondering where the last 10 minutes went, how I found my way, and how on Earth I didn’t crash at least 20 times. I go into autopilot mode and suddenly there is a whole article written in front of me, but surely I didn’t create that?

Inevitably, I wake up from these funks from time to time and wonder where I’ve been. Then, I vow to start fresh and do better. Right now, I’m ready to get more sleep, follow a set schedule, leave the house more, blah, blah, blah…Where am I? How did I get here? Hopefully someone won’t chop my head off during my next zombie moment!

Sharon T divides her time between life as a zombie and as a coherent freelance writer. She used to enjoy zombie-related entertainment, but now the idea of zombie killing makes her sad.


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