Learning to cope with leaving your day job and writing full time—I haven’t yet!
Hi Sia! Thanks for inviting me to guest blog at Thoughts Over Coffee today! I wanted to choose a topic that I’m currently struggling with in the hopes that I’m not alone.
After years of working part time in an office during the day while our kids were in school—writing early in the morning before work, and then again at night and on weekends—my darling husband suggested that I give my writing career my full attention and quit my day job. Now this wasn't because I suddenly was raking in the dough—not the case, or really the point—it was the spirit behind his offer, which I accepted after he reminded me that I supported him fully when he started his own engineering consulting business ten years ago and that it was my turn.
So, I quit my day job and that’s when then the Universe decided to throw a monkey wrench in our grand plans. I added driving our youngest son back and forth to work—a daily round trip of 4 hours—to my schedule, but again not the point… We needed to be there for him and to support him while he was waiting to get his license back. He needed to keep his job in order to become independent again.
I adjusted to another new writing schedule because I was fortunate enough to have back-to-back deadlines, for which I was eternally grateful, but it meant I had to focus completely during the hours I did have available to write in. Finally I saw the light at the end of the tunnel when he was able to get his license back—more writing time, I thought…Perfect!
And then the Universe laughed and our daughter and son-in-law asked me to babysit our grandbaby three days a week when maternity leave was over. The catch is that they both work in retail and neither one has a set schedule week to week. Soooo… I've been babysitting—and loving every minute of it! By the way, it is sooo much easier when you’re 20 years younger!
Two years have come and gone since I've quit my job to write full time, and I’m still trying to find my balance. There are days when I get sidetracked feeling guilty that I’m not bringing in a weekly paycheck, how does one get over that? If anyone has the answer, I’d love to hear it!
By far the hardest part of my job as an author is juggling the social networking part of it. There are days when I’m on deadline and completely forget that I haven’t posted to FB or tweeted or blogged about what I’m doing, nose-to-the-grindstone days when I’m writing or dealing with family issues and life itself.
Things have changed drastically from when I published my first book in 2000, hard to believe it people, but we didn't have the internet as it is today…no Facebook, Twitter, etc. We had email and on-line writing groups, but our promotional efforts were concentrated on mailing bookmarks, postcards and pens to bookstores and attending conferences. :-)
I wonder if the Universe is just reminding me that nothing in life is ever easy and that anything worthwhile never comes easily—and it shouldn't because we might not appreciate it as much if our goals were too easily met and obstacles too easily climbed over. So I’ll keep adjusting my writing schedule and meeting my deadlines and will try really hard to remember that I need to keep up with those wonderful friends and contacts in my social-networking life on FB and twitter and post more often.
My question for readers today is how have you balanced a career change with family and other obligations? Has it worked for you, or have you had to readjust?
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A WEDDING IN APPLE GROVE
He's not so sure about small town life.
She can't imagine living anywhere else
Welcome to Apple Grove, Ohio (population 597), where everyone has your best interests at heart, even if they can't agree on the best way to meddle. When the townsfolk of Apple Grove need handiwork done, there's no job too small for the Mulcahy sisters: Megan, Caitlin, and Grace.
Specializing in hard work and family loyalty, tomboy Meg Mulcahy has left behind any girlhood reams of romance. Enter newcomer Daniel Eagan, looking to bury his own broken heart and make a new start. He's surprised-and delighted-by the winsome girl with the mighty tool belt who shows up to fix his wiring.
But Dan's got a lot to learn about life in a small town, and when Meg's past collides with her future, it may take all 595 other residents of Apple Grove to keep this romance from short-circuiting.
“A terrifically fun read... With quick dialogue and a homey feel, this is a wonderful book to curl up with. Small-town romance at its best!” —RT Book Review, 4 Stars
C.H. ADMIRAND was born in Aiken, South Carolina, but grew up in New Jersey. She has been delighting readers with her Secret Life of Cowboys Series, featuring three cowboy brothers with Irish charm, and is now working on the next books in her small town contemporary romance series, featuring the town and quirky characters of Apple Grove, OH. She lives with her husband, who is the inspiration for all of her heroes’ best traits, in New Jersey. For more information, please visit www.CHAdmirand.com.