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‘Why am I doing this, again?’ A writer weighs the benefits of living in pricey Seattle

Gabriel Spitzer
Seattle writer Paulette Perhach


Seattle writer Paulette Perhachoften finds herself confronted with the question, “Am I crazy for doing this?”

What she means is, does it make sense, as an artist, to continue to live in a city where the cost of housing has nearly doubled in the past six years or so?

“I am someone who is bad with money, likes to spend it, and is also trying to live a life where, traditionally, not a lot of money is made, and live in a city that is now one of the world’s most expensive cities,” she says.

That has meant living in a 150-square-foot apartment with a shared bathroom, resisting the urge to eat out and, importantly for Paulette, figuring out how to be enough of an entrepreneur to fund her work as an artist, rather than depending on her art to pay the Seattle-sized bills.

Paulette is the author of “Welcome to the Writer’s Life.” She’s thought a lot about writing as a business, and how to make it all work. So, it seemed appropriate to do a little cost-benefit analysis of the decision to live out the writer’s life in Seattle. She joined Sound Effect host Gabriel Spitzer to talk it through.


Gabriel Spitzer is a former KNKX reporter, producer and host who covered science and health and worked on the show Sound Effect.