Monday, June 12, 2017

Writing Life vs. Real Life

One of the struggles I've experienced during my life in recent days is trying to find the time and energy to write. It's not that my muse hasn't been co-operating; it has been nattering in my head on and off for the past few weeks. However, things have been crazy in my personal life during that time.

I don't like to discuss my day job, since it has been irrelevant to my writing life, but recently it has begun to encroach on the time I have dedicated to writing. Allow me to elucidate ("No, not since the late 60's.") on this. For the past year, I have been working at a local university as an Administrative Clerk part-time. My afternoon shifts are only four hours-long, which allows me the opportunity to spend my mornings to run errands, make appointments, and when I can, spend time at my laptop writing away on my various projects. The job has allowed me to become a productive member of the workforce, while allowing me the freedom to work on my writing in my free time. In the end, it has been quite a harmonious marriage between the two; at least, when my muse is willing to co-operate. But, things can often change at the drop of a hat, and this is soon to be the case for me.

My supervisors have been impressed with my work ethic during the past year; doing my duties to the best of my abilities, and filling in for extra hours on the rare occasion when needed. One would be led to believe this would eventually lead to a bonus and/or a raise in the next few weeks when I reach my 1-year anniversary in early July. However, what they're hinting at could be more than I could ever imagine: the upgrade from part-time status to full-time.

While I would love the opportunity to get more hours and have my first-ever full-time job in the process (All of my previous positions when I've been a member of the Canadian workforce have been part-time.), this proves to be a bit of a dilemma for my "hobby" as an independent author. My morning hours which I previously had for optional "writing time" would be usurped by said day job. One could argue I could use the evenings after work to write, and that would be the most logical course to take should this come to reality. However, it would depend on my energy levels once I get home from what would transform from a 4-hour shift to one that would nearly double. (I'm still attempting to see if it would be a 7.5-hour shift, or an 8-hour one.) In my younger years, I could possibly fathom staying up late to write, get a short amount of sleep, then get up for work. But, at my age (I'll be turning 46 in August), and the fact I'm a married man, I don't think my wife would appreciate me spending a few hours alone in bed (our fur baby, notwithstanding) while I type away on my latest manuscript. That being said, I'm about to test this theory in a few weeks.

On July 1st, I will do another attempt at Camp NaNoWriMo, with the intent to write a 15,000-word mystery novelette within 31 days. That seems relatively easy enough; however, this is also during that period where it is rumored the full-time contract is slated to commence. Will I be able to juggle a full-time day job and successfully complete said novelette? Only time will tell, but I hope in the process, my hobby won't dry up completely.

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