Friday, August 22, 2014

Everyday Dragons

The biggest frustration in life is realizing that nothing goes according to plan- made all the more frustrating in how often we have to learn it.

It’s been impressed upon me (a lot recently) how transitory my current life balance is.
I’m an in-home nanny to four amazing nieces and nephews. My wages are of the “Room and Board” variety (and the regular supply of coffee), as well as dedicated time to work on my writing and further my actual career.
It’s the perfect gig for me, I love it! Unfortunately for me, our kids are growing up (as they tend to do) and with that shift I am needed less and less, and in the next year or so I won’t be needed at all.

So here I’m looking at my next couple years, looking at my work output and revenue from my writing and thinking, “Shit, how am I gonna make this work?”

Research suggests I need at least five books (and a dedicated audience) to actually make a livable profit of writing; It took me a year to publish my first book, and I’m pushing two years to get my second on paper, let alone published. 
I can forward my poetry and short stories a little, but honestly: Solvent in two years? On top of keeping up on my day job in the process and not keeling over from everything? I’m a bit daunted.

I’ve tried having a “real” day job and writing before and it’s… doable. But even as draining as the kids are most days, I’ve gotten so much more done in the last two years than I did working 9-5. The harsh reality is: it still might not be enough.

Hence, my family pushing me to make a plan. Be realistic. Not take a sweet(short term) deal for granted.

It’s not like I planned to be living this way. Honestly, I never dreamed of living in my brother’s garage at 25, making two bucks a month. That wasn’t in my plan.
I expected to be profitable by now: a rock star writer with my own family, my own horde of kids to torture and enjoy. I was gonna have a big kitschy, shabby chic house full of noise and food and art, music pouring out all day long.

What I have is a funky little garage, with cool mismatched furniture. I’ve got my dog, and the kids I borrow. I have art: Funky silly murals and drawings I and my family have done. And I have a stereo speaker in my window so I can blare tunes to the back yard. It’s a pretty kickass substitute, really. And I treasure every little moment. But it’s not exactly the dream, is it?

So here I sit; stressing myself out, trying to line up a two year plan to not give up on the dream, trying not to burn out on the little things I’ve always loved but haven’t owned myself.

God save me from Best Laid Plans, right?

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