Okay, so we’re constantly being told about how it’s nice to end up with someone on the same page as you, you know, so you can share your trials and tribulations of a hard day’s work with that special someone.
If you’re a teacher, why wouldn’t you want to come back home and explain how you just received a letter from that student who you thought was your best one yet outlining twelve possible reasons why he wants to kill you slowly and meticulously? On the other hand, as a Doctor, what could possibly be better than coming back home after an arduous twelve hour shift and sharing why that patient you “accidentally” left a pair of scissors in after slicing them open is going to sue you for everything you got?
Hey, at least your partner’s got your back, right? Plus, as an added bonus in the Doctor’s case, your divorce hearing is going to be short and sweet.
Even if you can’t quite wrap your brainy tentacles around why anyone on earth would ever want to get with someone who is most likely to have had exactly the same day as you (unless you are truly aiming for the award for the most boring life ever, then please go ahead), there are some absolutely undeniable facts as to why writers should stay clear of one another – at least in the “relationship” field:
1. Every time your partner politely asks you to go shopping, frantic alarm bells ring uncontrollably in your head because you know the shopping list is going to read like a novel and the last 24 hour Walmart in your area has a restraining order out on you because you never leave the premises. Seriously. It’s not your fault; it just took you that long to get through the list, that’s all.
2. Your children end up falling asleep before you get through the first line of a bedtime story because you and your partner are too busy discussing the appropriateness of commencing a fable with “Once Upon a Time”. You’re still discussing how Snow White taking an apple from the Evil Queen (and anyway – who would fall for that pathetic disguise in the first place?) is not realistic enough considering all the “Stanger Danger” lectures out there when your kids wake up in the morning.
3. A surprise ending is always so predictable because you understand the way your partner’s mind works for a climatic end. They wine and dine you and it’s already playing out in your head because you’ve been editing their novels for as long as you can remember. The only move that may shock you – the “you’ve been served” rendition when the postman hands you your “out of the blue” divorce request. To top it all off, instead of being devastated, you’re proud of them and you ring them up to say that that elusive cliff-hanger ending they’ve been working so hard to achieve is in the bag, baby!
4. Your partner cooks you (or at least what you believe to be) a subliminal inducing dinner and you are unable to give them false criticism because you take your role as a critic very seriously but you still want to be encouraging about the devastation anyway and end up saying “It’s nice honey. I mean it’s no Pulitzer Prize but just keep at it, You know, practice does make perfect. No matter how impossible it may feel right now. To both of us”.
5. Wait though. There’s more. The most devastating result of ending up with another writer. Your children have been so severely traumatised by having to grow up in a household with two people who believe everything they do (including the act of breathing) should be penned down, when career day comes around, they finally build up the courage to tell you, wait for it – they want to be Doctors!
Now what could possibly be worse than that? It’s settled, you’ve officially failed as parents.
On the bright side though, you may finally have that tragedy you’ve been meaning to write for years but haven’t been buoyed adequately enough for by that gut wrenching experience you absolutely need to feel in order to do so. Nobel Laureate in literature – here I come!