I’m coming at you live from a cafe called Three Friends. As a sign of my mood, sitting around a coffee house rates as positive.
Yesterday I received my first paycheck in a long while. Thus, my writing grant time-off officially ends.
It was great while it lasted. Too bad I had preposterous hopes during that time, namely that I wouldn’t have to work a day-job ever again, that I’d land that publishing deal, that yadda yadda yadda…
I won’t dwell on the only-ifs like I won’t dwell on the fact that my time-off was supposed to last until July, 2009. Bloody economy.
Officially, I’m now an Instructional Designer. A fancy term for writing training material. I found an ongoing contracting gig with a family-run company that manages outsourced documentation projects for a certain gynormous software corporation.
I made it out the other end of my turmoil, and I’m no longer depressed or panicked. In fact, in the spirit of positivism for 2009, let me count all the ways my new gig is good:
1. First and foremost, I’ll still have time for fiction. I’m predicting that the new gig will be part-time with full-time spurts, and I’m predicting that because of its deadlines, I’ll become more efficient all around.
2. I’m astounded at how well it pays. (Thanks to bottomless gynormous-corporation coffers.)
3. This is a better fit for me than the salaried job I left behind, which enervated me in the biggest way even though it, too, was part-time, from home. (Key word: “salaried.” Meaning: still enmeshed in a corporate culture with its 1-on-1s, meetings, boss politics, and performance reviews.)
4. I can take on as much or as little work as I want, which means that I can still take writing sabbaticals and travel if I want. (In fact, I might have to go on another mini-writing retreat here soon!)
5. This is going to sound backwards but finding this gig halted my desperation to land that publishing contract now. I can go back to taking my sweet time, concentrating on craft and my next story.
6. I’m used to living lean — I’m pretty simple anyhow — but a little leeway will be nice. I love summer sandals! And a pedicure now and then? Heaven!