Monday, February 8, 2016

The Very Best Job for Me by Grace Burrowes

This is the time of year when, as a school child, I always felt a sense of hopelessness. Summer was sooooo faaaaar awaaaaay, and all the big holidays were behind us. I was a school child before there was such a thing as Spring Break, and Easter sometimes meant little more than a long weekend.

I was not a social child, and I do not like to be told what to do, much less when and how to do it, so school was tough for me. A snow day was manna from heaven, and the day the pipes froze at my elementary school was proof of a benevolent Deity.

I contrast the sense of grim endurance I grew up with to the way my days roll along now, at least my published author days (lawyer days are a different matter, but they are gradually becoming fewer in number). So here's a list of reasons why your children might want to grow up to be writers...

1) No time clock. I write when I want to, whether that's 5 am or 11 pm, or both.

2) No uniform, not even the informal "business casual." I wear my jammies, my nightie, my fuzzies, my yoga pants... whatever I feel like wearing.

3) No loud, inconsiderate co-workers... though the dogs bark when the mail truck comes by.

4) Nobody ever takes the last cup of coffee (or tea in my case). Nor do they steal my lunch from the employee fridge.

5) No time sheet. When I publish a book, I earn money. Nice and simple.

6) Lovely readers. My readers have to be the most kind, supportive, good-humored, constructive, tolerant.... oh, I could gush about my readers.

7) Lovely writin' buddies. The overwhelming majority of authors and publishing professionals I've come in contact with have been wonderful people, always ready to lend a hand or an encouraging word. The few pikers in the bunch, well, the rest of us use them as inspiration for our villains.

8) Variety. If I run out of writing steam, I can always go looking for my next cover model, do some research on the London Beer Flood,, or catch up with my Facebook friends.

9) Challenge. You try coming up with a story that has the character arc of a tragedy, the happily ever after and warmth of a comedy, the pacing of a thriller, the external conflict of a mystery, the prose of good literature... with not one but two protagonists, and a world that many of the readers are expert on. Every word has to count, and every detail has to be right.

10) Meaning. I believe in love, It's our highest motivation, our greatest comfort, and our most sincere frustration, and life without it is mighty bleak. I get to write about love, and the courage love
gives us to be the best people we can be, living the lives we were meant to live.

What job could possible top the one I have when I sit down to write a book?

What is the ideal job for you, or what do you enjoy most about your current job--and by job, let's please not limit the discussion to paid occupations. Some of the greatest challenges and most important efforts we put forth (parenting!) are often uncompensated.

To one commenter, I'll send a signed copy of Will's True Wish, wherein, our hero finds out that his job is not only to train dogs, but also to obey the commands of love.




16 comments:

  1. I don't have to interact with many people at my job, which is very lovely as an introvert!

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    1. For me too. I've had those bullpen jobs, and can't believe management would plan an entire building to thwart the productivity and peace of mind of the introverts.

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  2. You have to be very disciplined to do what you do. I was probably the opposite of you - I couldn't wait to get to school and I hated weekends (not a great home life). I enjoyed raising my two girls and I've always enjoyed volunteering. Animals are special for me and caring for ferals/strays has been a calling for me. I've just started a part-time job out of necessity but I think getting out of the house has been good for me and I do enjoy (most) people. I also love games of any kind - if I could make a living doing that...lol.

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    1. There are professional gamers, but I think they mostly play on-line games. I hope the part time job continues to be a good fit for you--cat food isn't cheap, I know.

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  3. Author is idea for all the reasons you mentioned, but if I tell myself I can write any time, I'll never get any pages in!

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    1. My ideal writing time has shifted, from 4-7 am, to later in the day, and I'll often tuck in a little reflection right before bed.

      If I tried to insist on writing at only a set time each day, I'd probably produce a lot less.

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  4. everyday's different

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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  5. I always wanted to be a writer, but sometimes I wonder what I would do if I didn't write. I think mail carrier could be fun. You get your walking in on the job, and get to wonder about what's in all those boxes and envelopes (which leads me to new story ideas, because I can't get away from being a writer).

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    1. If I had it to do over again, I would have skipped straight from musician to writer, with no lawyering in between, though the legal income made a lot of lifestyle choices possible. Ornamental horticulture has always appealed to me, too.

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  6. I'm sure you have to be great at time management to be successful at writing. It would be nice to try it, but I'm sure it's a difficult occupation, too.

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    1. I didn't really start writing until my daughter left home. The authors who are still child-rearing, working a day job, AND getting in writing time are the ones managing time like a boss. I just write when I please.

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  7. I am a branch librarian in 2 small towns! I work 3 days a week in one and 2 days a week in the other smaller town. Love my job!!

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    1. And what an important job it is, too! From all of us authors to all of you librarians, thanks!

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  8. Hands down the most rewarding job I've ever had is being a mom. Second most rewarding job was coordinating book fairs for my kids elementary school. Getting kids hooked on books was great. Now? I do help people find the right foods and supplies for their pets as well as help solve problems for them - so it is still rewarding a lot of the time.

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    1. I'd have to agree. Parenting is the best job on the planet--also the hardest.

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