Writing in Pajamas


Peach pj’s on the line

I just spent 5 days editing without changing out of my pajamas. It seemed a good time to share an old guest post I had the honor of contributing to Seumas Gallacher’s wonderful blog. Thus…Writing in Pajamas.

To me, flannel pajamas are symbolic. Whenever I get the chance, I wear them all day, and in case you were wondering, I’m pj-clad as I type this post.

In my mother’s generation, all-day pajamas indicated a mortifying degree of sloth. Pinch-lipped gossips would roll their eyes toward heaven, conjuring images of beer before breakfast, dust bunnies, and soap operas. If a woman wore pajamas all day, she certainly didn’t chair the holiday bazaar or volunteer at the library. Her kids lacked appropriate moral supervision and, no doubt, roamed the neighborhood like hooligans. Never mind her neglected spouse nibbling TV dinners after a long day at the plant.

My guess is some people still think that way, and now and then, they’re probably not wrong. Yet, I never ascribed to that characterization. My pajamas epitomize the wonderful and rare days when I can slide from bed straight into writing mode. I rouse myself to pour more coffee and toss a log in the woodstove, but that’s about it. No volunteering, no grocery shopping, no babysitting, the house to myself…It’s a bit of creative heaven.

If I’m still in my woolly slippers and snowman pajamas when the clock strikes two, I’m at my peak, fulfilling a mission, playing God. Worlds are being created and razed, characters loved and destroyed. Pathos, humor, desperation, joy, and death tap like magic from my fingertips. Who has time to get dressed with a universe in the throes of chaos?

Sometimes I go a touch far, I’ll admit. I want to hold onto that “this day is mine, mine, mine” feeling. I cling to the illusion that I haven’t surrendered my creative immersion to other tasks. There are days when my pajama-wearing mulishness raises eyebrows.

None of you, hopefully, is shocked by my occasional dash in slippers and assorted-fruit flannels to retrieve something from the car or the shed. You all do that, right? And, you’ve gone to the mailbox and…um, walked the dog? Those are things normal people do in pajamas, don’t they?

Of course, I don’t stop there. Yesterday, I split wood in my slippers and snowflake pj’s, an almost farcical feat for which there are no pictures, thank the stars. Still in my pajamas, I’ve visited my neighbor to pick up my weekly goat’s milk supply, and on occasion, I’ve stopped in at the post office to mail books. I frequently wear my slippers to meetings. (If they want me to volunteer, they can deal with my choice of footwear, right?) And if I feel the need to dress up all fancy, I change the bottom half into jeans and yank a sweatshirt over the green turtles adorning the top.

I live in the northwest Oregon mountains outside a dinky town where everyone knows everyone else. I get away with this peculiar behavior because I’m a fantasy author. I’m permitted to be a bit eccentric. If they don’t remember me for my books, they’ll remember me as a lunatic. I’m fine either way.

To be honest, the real reason for my overindulgence in sleepwear is that once my little forays into the normal world are accomplished, I can return to my chair, my coffee, and my laptop without missing a beat. Wearing my pajamas is the bridge that keeps me connected to the fantastical side of my imagination. I relegate the outside world to a space between two parentheses, so the stories inside my head can continue unabated. That’s where I prefer to spend my time, and pajamas give me permission to dream.

208 thoughts on “Writing in Pajamas

  1. dorne whale says:

    Reblogged this on Write Dorne – Putting life into words. and commented:
    To be lost in the moment – lovely.
    Enjoyed this post and so I am reblogging it on Write Dorne.
    Thanks to D Wallace Peach and thanks to you for dropping by.
    Dorne x

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Gin says:

    I love this piece with all my heart 😆

    Liked by 1 person

  3. davefrantony says:

    Flannel pajams….splitting logs…..coffee, it’s the only way to lose your inhibitions and to write with freedom.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. “Who has time to get dressed with a universe in the throes of chaos?”

    This is the exact question I ask myself every morning, except less ‘with a universe in the throes of chaos’ and more ‘with this cat laying in my lap.’

    Liked by 1 person

  5. clay1waters says:

    This is amazing. Very well said!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. you are so funny, you were joking, right o.o ? ..Actually I do the same but I don’t go out with them on.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. sargondorsai says:

    I enjoy the ritual of getting dressed in the morning. It helps me to wake up as I help the kids get ready for their day. Then again, my idea of pajamas isn’t exactly appropriate for most out of the home activities, so that might have something to do with it.

    Either way, I enjoyed this post. I can picture you shuffling around the house with pen and paper in hand, doing your writing. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • We all have our rituals, I think, that signal the start of the day. I’m usually glued to my recliner, laptop open, coffee at the elbow by 5 AM. Thanks for the visit and have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

      • sargondorsai says:

        I wake up when the kids wake up in the summer. Otherwise I’m up before the sun to get the kids ready for school.

        Either way, I’m still on the recliner at my desk. Yes, that’s right. I use a recliner instead of a computer chair. Mostly for medical reasons but that’s a whole ‘nother discussion.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Depraved Imaginings says:

    It’s interesting how we need to do things so intrinsic to our daily lives in order to transcend them. Whether its you staying in PJs, or the sci-fi writer who needs to sit in the comfort of their room in order to write about imaginary worlds.This post was funny and undoubtedly refreshing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for the comment. We are strange animals with our little rituals. 🙂 And the other worlds in our heads? I have to remind myself to check in with the “real” world every now and then. Have a great week and thanks for the visit!


  9. […] Source: Writing in Pajamas […]


  10. Jude H says:

    Honestly, a whole day in pyjamas is a day well spent! They’re the best writing attire there is! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. My favorite post here. Enjoyed the writing and…we do goat milk, too. Although the best we could get is TJs (no luck whacking the bushes). But back to the point, why wouldn’t we want to be at our most comfortable doing what we love most?

    Liked by 1 person

  12. stevetanham says:

    Lovely image of your cosy dedication! That’s very single-minded stuff..

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I can totally relate. On my writing days, I make myself a deal. I can’t eat until I shower and change.

    This is good both for my diet (because breakfast doesn’t happen), and it forces me to dress. Eventually. One day I stuck it out until dinner time anyway. I kept thinking, “Just let me get to the end of this chapter first.”

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Mahevash says:

    “Pajamas give me permission to dream.”

    Loved that line SO MUCH!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I like it….I have been known to wear my pajamas way too much during winter time, which is about two weeks in Texas, lol. We are already into tank tops and shorts weather and will be through October. I did wear tye-dye t-shirts for about a week, even to the point that the California guy started looking at me sideways. Writers need to be comfortable and choose the best clothing for imagination processing 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I wrote poetry to my pyjamas once. Not in them. To them. I might have been in them at the time, but it was out of overwhelming love I wrote a poem to them. I am not jealous of your pyjamability at all, no Ma’am. Even if your routine is the kind of existence to which every writer aspires. But I will say that it’s possible I love my pyjamas so much because when I am in them, I am categorically not in the office. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Sean P Carlin says:

    What a fantastic tribute, Diana, to the idiosyncrasies of the creative spirit! One of the great gifts of being a writer is the ability to do your work in whatever state you choose. I love that your sleepwear is the totem that brings you into the world in which you’re most comfortable, like Indiana Jones’ fedora and bullwhip, or Harry Potter’s robe and wand. Really lovely essay.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Sean. It was a wee bit embellished, but not much. I did weed my back patio is pajamas today during my writing breaks. 😀 I should invest in a magic robe – that would shock the neighbors. Thanks for the visit!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sean P Carlin says:

        Most of my own anecdotes are embellished a bit, too; storytelling, after all, is the art of taking the mundane and making it both entertaining and meaningful.

        Liked by 1 person


    Liked by 1 person

  19. reocochran says:

    I am usually heading off to work or coming home, so I have fun thinking about future pajama blogging days! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Perfect time to dream about pjs, Robin. I imagine you have to dress for wandering about taking photos, but hopefully some lazy pj mornings in your future 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • reocochran says:

        I have those lazy moments, Diana. Last weekend, I ran through the McD’s drive thru to pick up pancakes, bacon, butter, juice for my little grandson, plus two egg, cheese, bacon biscuits and two coffees for my Mom and I. Why would I do this when her dining room serves breakfast (free for guests)? Because we overslept the 10:00 am deadline!! And I did have a rather large T-shirt and flannel (p.j.) capri’s. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  20. Trinity says:

    I can so relate! Several years ago I was on a street theatre troupe around Britain for about 18 months; when we neared home with time off (Paisley, Scotland), I would have what I called a “PJ-Day” – if anyone came by, I’d just tell them through the peep-hole that I was in my PJs, and couldn’t open the door… it gave this introvert an excuse to pull back and recharge! And now, as an author, I can get cosy and focus on the essential – my next manuscript! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • I think you have more friends than I do! Ha ha. No one comes by here and if they did I think they’d come in anyway. But what a great trick to get a peaceful day of creativity! I hope you get a pj-day soon. Happy Writing 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Trinity says:

        I don’t get them these days, as we have an exchange student living with us this year, and I never know when she’ll bring home friends from school; I can live with it, as I have “my” time at night, when the rest of the world is sleeping (I don’t need more than 5 hours, which is practical!!). 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

      • Your writing is captivating and I can’t wait to read more. I just saw that you followed my blog, Photoquest. Thank you! However, my active blog is now Musinwithsusan. Take a look, if you have a chance.

        Liked by 2 people

  21. With all due respect, if you need to chop wood, you can put to on some honest-to-goodness pants. Sheesh!

    Liked by 2 people

  22. This brought back memories of some of the best days ever! I would stay in pajamas all day if I could!! I’ll just have to live vicariously through you 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  23. tedgiffin says:

    I chuckled over this, because I will be remembered as a lunatic as well..Great line!

    Liked by 2 people

  24. Khaya Ronkainen says:

    Love, love this, Diana. “It’s a bit of creative heaven” I live in too and the most happiest. Wonderful post. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  25. astridswords says:

    Working in comfort offers a tremendous supply of inspiration.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree, Astrid. Getting dressed feels like entering the “real” world of duties and chores. Hope you have a chance to enjoy some comfy writing this week. Thanks for the visit.:-)


  26. Julie says:

    I’ll take flannel over high heels any day. Great post Diana!

    Liked by 2 people

  27. dgkaye says:

    Here, here to pyjamas! I work in them from home every day. How else are we to write long hours? LOL 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  28. Hahaha This is Awesome Diana !!! I am still smiling from ear to ear. For me, it just says, you are human, and I love it. I love that you can do that, and I totally agree…usually one’s best work is done in their pj’s 🙂 😉 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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