Monday, August 30, 2010

Thinking About the Future

All writers dream of a point in their careers when they can quit their day jobs and work full-time as a writer, of course this is a rare occurrence. Your odds of this happening to you is most likely worse than hitting the lottery. It makes you wonder why the hell you keep at it. All the work, rejection and self-flaggration for little monetary reward. And, let's admit it, the printed word is not flourishing and the business models of all of the publishing companies suck. Very few people are going to get rich.

But the purpose of this post is not why I continue to write and dream of publishing - the answer to that probably involves questioning my mental well-being and overall intelligence, and let's not go there. No, the reason I'm tap-tap-taping away at the keyboard is to discuss the financial stability of the deranged dreamer - in this case a hopeless writer with delusions of publishing success (hint: that's me). Right now I make shit for money despite the fact that I do have a college degree, actually two, one of those being a Master's. All the newspapers and magazine taut the importance of a college education in expanding your earning ability. That's horseshit, by the way, if you live in a relatively economically depressed area with little job potential, unless you're a social worker.

But, I continue to delude myself, and have decided to do something to make much more money than I do now. In order to spread joy and contentment wherever I go, I've decided to become... a waiter. Oh, wait, that's a Monty Python sketch. No, I've decided to get an MBA. I know, that means more education, which hasn't really done much in terms of filling my bank account, but the earning potential does increase with those three letters after my name - more so than the current MFA does.

What this means is that I will have even less time to write. That dream becomes a bit dimmer, though not completely gone. At this point, it is probably more important that I consider my family's financial well-being rather than fulfilling some notion of publishing notoriety. I guess the good news is that the writing bug will never die, and I do intend on writing - and who knows, having less time may force me to utilize what free time I do have and force me to actually write more. Stranger things have happened, I suppose.

Oh, well.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

I'm Tired, But Sleep Just Won't Come

I've always had trouble sleeping at night. Right now it's close to 12:30 and I've already spent a good 45 minutes just staring into darkness, listening to the fan in the air conditioner. I hear the cat move about, but even he is asleep somewhere now. Probably on my side of the bed.

They say that geniuses sleep only a few hours a night. I guess my MENSA certificate should be here any moment. On the other hand, if the sun were out, I would probably be very drowsy and able to fall asleep sitting at this desk for a number of hours. Daylight makes me tired.

And as I sit here surrounded by a number of six-foot tall bookshelves, each one straining against the weight of hundreds of books; I know that I would not be as well read (or at least as well read as I am, which is better than average, but certainly not as much as some), familiar with as many films or listen to as much music if I weren't the insomniac I am.

Today, some 3,300 hours from The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson was released on the internet. Since I am such a night person, and considering that we didn't have cable growing up, I watched him almost every night, along with Letterman. I miss that show.

Anyway, typing away hasn't done anything to make me think I'm ready for bed. Back to the Accounting textbook for another 20 pages before I try again.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Research. Ugh!

I like doing research as much as I like shaving. Maybe because I usually do it after the fact. I make up shit and hope like hell the research will back me up - if it doesn't, then, hell, it's called fiction for a reason, right? Recently I have scattered e-mails out to a number of people with some questions, with only one reply. (Thank you, Peregrine.) I feel like a beggar asking for a dollar.

I think one of the things I hate about asking people questions is that I can't point to a novel as proof that I'm actual writer. Sure, you can find the anthologies I'm in, but my name on the cover is usually spelled, "And Others." There are e-zines, but who wants to take the time to explain what that is and where one can find them? I can also say I have an MFA (and I have), but big fucking deal, right?

Oh, well.