Writers' Rights

  Well, the hot toddies don’t seem to be helping. Here is the deal I cut with my cold on Friday afternoon: okay I’ll be patient with you, humour you over the weekend and subject you to absolutely no pressure, but I want you gone by 9am Monday.

It’s now Sunday afternoon and has it gone? Yes, to my chest. My lungs are full of vile clagginess and my tubes are whistling and groaning like a clapped out harmonium. I need sick leave. But writers don’t get sick leave, especially not six weeks off a delivery deadline. Like all self-employed people they get leave to buck up and go to work in their dressing gown. 

There is a trade-off, I realise. Unlike employees who have to clock in I can start work any time I darn well choose and I can turn up to the office dressed as Wilma Flintstone if I want to. I can send as many personal emails as I wish, I can sing, sniff and cough to my heart’s content, and I never get asked to chip in for a Sorry You’re Leaving card for someone I hardly know. These are the bonuses of being self-employed. I recognise them and I appreciate them. But I’d still like a couple more days off with this cold.

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