Thursday, June 24, 2010

Okay! Okay! So I need a job!

It's summer, and the university where I work during fall and spring semester doesn't give adjuncts summer work. What does that mean? It means summers suck, at least, financially. No worky-no earny-no earny-no buyee (That didn't come out just the way I wanted it, but you get the drift!)

I did pick up five weeks of work, teaching through a special program for disadvantaged high school students. I love the program and the kids, but it IS only FIVE weeks of work out of four months. Every summer, I tell myself, "You've got to get a real job." BUT every summer, I procrastinate because, darn it! I like to teach almost as much as I like to write. So what if being an adjunct means that I make very little money compared to other people who have MA's. So what, if I get no benefits from the state, and I have to pay for on-campus parking. So what if I spend Christmas vacation sweating it out as to whether I'll get a contract for spring! So what if public school employment possibilities are as dead as post secondary jobs! Teaching? What am I doing?

I'll keep teaching. That's what I do, but I also keep hoping that writing becomes my job and teaching is just my hobby. That's why I can't believe I let myself get so far down that I couldn't write. If anybody's out there, if anybody's reading this: DON'T GET THAT FAR DOWN! (That's right. I shouted.) Writing gets under your fingernails and embeds itself in the pores. It becomes as much a part of the writer as blood and bone. To punish myself by not hitting the keyboard is as bad as Van Gogh cutting off his own ear (an event whose validity recently became a subject of debate)!

I write. Writing is as much therapy as production. Remember that. Remember me, and for Heaven's sake, send me job suggestions! :D

Sunday, June 13, 2010


It seems that moaning about my sad state might just have worked, ergo I might just moan more often. (Wow! That's a nicely alliterated sentence, if I do say so myself.) Anyways, after the moan, I found 1536 words, some not-so-evaporated editing skills, and two new chapters in my series. Not bad for someone who wanted to go to a cliff and beg God to have the rocks fall on her. can happen. A writer who felt like she had no words left can find those words lurking in the most unexpected places.

The way I see it now is that anyone who's thinking about suicide should write a suicide note, then sit, read, and think some more. First question: Who the hell would care that I was dead? Second question: How long would they care? Third series of connected questions: Did I play the lottery this week? What if my numbers won and *gulp* I had already checked out? Would the undertaker find the ticket in my pocket, collect my winnings, sell his establishment before my service, and end up on MY beach in the Caribbean? Fourth series of connected questions: Hey! Wouldn't that dead lottery winner/undertaker thingy make a great plot line for a novel? Should I write the novel or let that damned undertaker take something else that belonged to me? That undertaker! Who does he think he is? (But I digress.)

See how it works? (Not connected to the above series of questions) Get sad. Okay. Everybody gets sad, and it's okay to be sad unless that "long barrel of despair" lasts longer than three weeks. (If it's that long-lasting, it's time for the doc and the happy pills. Depression, serious depression, is a serious matter with serious consequences unless taken seriously. I mean that!) The best solution for sadness that I've discovered is madness, not insanity but true anger. Don't be mad at others because the only person that can make you happy is YOU. There are no knights in shining armor, no surprise visits from previously unknown billionaire parents, no magic (other than the perfect sunset), and no one to snap your suspenders but you. In this case, ME.

So...after the previous blogged moaning, I thought about what I always told my clients: "It's not the hand you're dealt in life. It's how you play your cards." (I'm sure that I'm not the first person to use that line, and so I bow to the original purveyor of that great wisdom.) I looked at my recently dealt hand and then asked for four cards. Quite a risk, huh? Well, I didn't get a Royal Flush, but I picked up at least a pair and am still in the game. I got some employment for July, only July, but hey, a month of salary is a month of salary. Know what I mean? When I flick the switch on my wall, I like to have the lights come on. Bills are bills and, as hard as this is to believe, people actually expect payment. Just saying.