One of the biggest complaints among freelance writers and other freelance businesses is getting others in your life to respect your work hours during the day. I have a friend and a relative that used to think nothing of showing up unannounced at my door. I would tell them I was working, and even try to work while they were visiting to get the message across, but apparently I needed a flashing billboard sign.
I have seen many freelance writers discussing this very issue at writer's forums and on their blogs all over the web. Many of us are frustrated with explaining what we do for a living. What does it take to get those close to us to realize that we are running a business, not just kicking it each afternoon? I don't know about you, but my perpetrators always show up when there is a deadline pending.
It used to bother me that my family thought I was sitting around doing nothing all day. But I realized that in order to maintain the love between us, I needed to stop seeking their approval. So I stopped trying to force them to understand my business, and just firmly let them know when they drop by unexpectedly that I am unavailable since I am in the middle of my work day. The frequency of those visits is dwindling fast. Learning to say "no" to the things that take you off course during your work day is an important right of passage for many writers.