Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Throwing in the towel

Actually, I prefer to look on this as reaching a realisation.

I've decided to stop the editing work that has insidiously crept into every nook and cranny and spare moment of my waking life.

After finding that I was using up my most productive, precious early morning creative time with just trying to get a little bit more of these reports out of the way before anyone else in the house wakes, then noticing that I was putting the LGBB into occasional care more often than not during the week in order to rush to finish the work each day, I have been pulled up straight.

Last Thursday, very calmly, I made the decision to quit.

I could have gone out in a grand fanfare of "and what's more"s with my superior, but instead, I kept to what was truly important to me - and that was, simply stating the work was not fitting in with the other, frankly more worthwhile, commitments around me.

My book writing hasn't really suffered through this. If anything, the daily grind has given me back my sense of work ethic. Now just to fill some of the space I've made, to allow this editing work, with writing. I feel I've now established my new discipline and I did need to be answerable to a job like this on a permanent basis to find it. I would not have stumbled myself into line even if I tried for the next ten years. Ad hoc work (and working for yourself) is one glorious thing, but it is quite another to be diligent about working consistently, on your own, with nobody really setting any deadlines or checking up on you.

Home life, too, is suffering too much for me not to notice or care. I don't like that my wee one will suggest something we could do together on any given day and, invariably, my response has had to be, "Ohhh, darlin', we can't because you're going to the kids and Mummy has to work." Forget the fact that she adores her friends, The Kids (collectively, apparently, as this is what she calls the centre) - I don't want that sense of other carers and other people's children influencing my child in these important early years more than me on an almost daily basis. Nope. Just doesn't sit well with me.

And let's not even MENTION the state the house is in because I no longer have any free-wheelin' time at all to clean it properly, as I value time with Lolly when she's home more importantly than cleaning - although at some point, a messy or dirty house gets on my nerves and I fall in a heap about it piling up around me. I want my orderly house back too!

So I have until the end of October and then I am free. Free with my abilities again. I've had quite some time to think about all the things I could be doing if it weren't for editing. And I have decided I need to volunteer some of my time to a worthy cause. I have a couple of ideas and know someone in particular who is struggling with her volunteer-run organisation, in a field that is right in line with my life experience.

There's also that other little (big) monkey on my back - the book. The universe unto itself. It is going really well. I'm excited! Currently waiting on a call back from my editor, to discuss the change in title I have made and a few other concepts that have come to me recently. So there's lots of time to be spent there. I just want it finished now. Am itching to say I've finished it, really keen to submit it to publishers. I know that's still a way off yet. Am also toying with the idea of allowing my father, himself a well established editor (he's actually a Doctor of Engineering, the smartbum), a squizz at it but not sure if I'm comfortable enough yet. I think I will be, eventually, and really would appreciate his input.

So there you have it. Just a tiny update from a day in the life of me. Being Me.

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