Monday, 4 November 2013

A Real Job, Really.

So here it is, November, and I'm deeply into NaNoWriMo.  (I'll post sporadic updates as I go along.)

I've prepared for this by drafting an outline, dreaming about scenarios and developing characters.  BIC, and away I go!

I've also prepared the people around me: family, friends, Relief Society...  I've told them what NaNoWriMo is, and what it means.  They understand, the way a dog understands when you explain mathematics to them--accepting, if not completely sure what it means.

But come December, I don't plan on slowing down.  I intent to continue my writing pace. (Here's a secret: it's the same pace I've been using for several months prior to November.  Nothing's changed, except I get public accolades for work done during November.)

For the past few months, while I've been training myself as a professional writer with a Day Job, said Day Job has had me working full/school time.  Yep. All my weekdays have been spent working the Day Job (and getting paid for it, but that's irrelevant. it's the TIME that matters).   People have asked me, "Can you do this at such-and-such a time?"

"No, I'm working."

"Are you available for that other thing?"

"Nope, sorry.  Working."

But come the end of November, I go back to my part-time hours at the Day Job.  What I'm not working at the Day Job becomes Writing Time. And in my career plans, that qualifies as Working.  Within the next five years, I plan on acquiring an income because of that Writing Time.  In a lot of people's books, that qualifies as Working.

So what if my current writing income is minimal (but present)?  One's job is not necessarily measured by one's hourly wage.

I need to train up the people around me to know that when I am writing, I am working.  This isn't some hobby, or some cute little creative outlet because Mommy Doesn't Want to Forget Herself.  It's not something I'll cheerfully put aside the moment someone or something wants my attention.  You wouldn't bother an accountant when they're auditing.  You wouldn't bother a librarian when she's shelving.  You wouldn't bother the Helpdesk guy when he's troubleshooting (well, actually, you do, and it drives me nuts!) You don't bother the author when she's tapping way at a keyboard.

This is an actual job.  I have a schedule. I have project planning days. I have deadlines. I have external people expecting my work. I have to produce a certain amount of quality product at a certain rate.

So what if I'm doing all that work from home?  Doesn't make it any less a job than if I went to an office.

But if it bothers you so much, I'll head out to an office.  That's what Dome is for.  That's what the University Library is for.  Ain't nobbut gonna bother me there.
Her Grace has a plan.  You will respect the plan. All glory to the hypnotoad.

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