As some of you know, I recently was offered a professional position with the university that represents a huge step up for me financially. It was not a job I sought out, but rather was one I was asked to take when the supervisor of the department I’ve worked in part time for two years quit. Given all factors, including my poverty-fatigue and the state of the economy, I accepted the offer.
I’m not regretting that, and I’m actually looking forward to earning a few more dollars. It will be nice to have a legit savings account that isn’t holding “my last $50”, as well as getting this rotten tooth fixed (it hurts so much these days).
But in the meantime I also got another book accepted for publication, and am getting ready to self-publish two others.
As I sat on the front porch in this beautiful North Florida-autumn weather yesterday, I felt surprisingly at peace with all of this. The job is not ideal and not where I want to focus my career, but it’s a decent position working with good people doing a necessary service for the students of the university. I can feel proud of what I will (eventually) accomplish there. I can also look at it as a short-term (two+ years) solution to my financial situation, something that can carry me and my bills along while my writing career solidifies.
Ever since I was a young girl and first read Andre Norton’s works, I knew what I wanted to do. I’ve tried so many times to derail myself from “unrealistic expectations” and do something — anything — else that was more “respectable” by the middle-class standards I was raised to conform to. Yet, I always turned out miserable and broke. From those experiences I really do believe the aphorism that if you don’t follow your dreams, you will only find failure, over and over. The old “you will keep being presented with the same problem until you learn your lesson” idea is not wrong.
Working against me for most of my life was the publishing industry itself. Ten years ago, the publishing industry was starting to change but was still mired in the legacy system that had no place for me. From 1995 to 2005, it honestly was unrealistic for me to expect to make a living off of my writing. Things are different now, and I am invested in making happen for me what is happening for a lot of other writers in “niche” markets like mine. I might try to break out into het romance or gen sf, eventually, but for now I am looking at a future where I can write my beloved M/M and M/F/M stories, publish them, and have them bought by people who want to read them.
It’s not a good way to get rich but with time, persistence, and now a decent day!job that keeps my head above water in the meantime, I know I will get to where I want to be: full time writer who loves going to work. 😉