Planning for the Future
I was talking with my writing partner this afternoon when we came onto the question of book reviews. The subject opened up an entirely different strain of conversation for us both. This writer is one of the busiest people I’ve ever known.
Having said that, I can shock you even more by telling you that I actually suggested that she take on more work. I know, evil Claudsy. There was method to my madness, though. You see, she also teaches university level subjects. And that job is becoming more dangerous, in a life and death sort of way, by the week.
Yet, teaching is necessary for a solid financial bottom line. So, what’s a writer to do. If I want to write full time, for instance, and be able to live off the proceeds, I’d better be very good at the job or do a lot of it. I could build a freelance copywriter’s reputation and client list. I have friends who do just that and who are very good at what they do.
But what if I don’t want to take that path to freedom? What if I want to write my stories and small mag articles and poetry? What about living off that kind of income. Too bad. So sad. No go.
Those who are realistic about our profession all come to this crossroads as a humbling destination. But some, if clever and inventive, can take what they do and make more of it than they anticipated. My partner is one example.
She already does reviews for professional journals and books for adults. She already does speaking engagements for a variety of groups. She has book contracts for three separate books (academic in nature), and she has the stories and articles that she writes for children.
With all of that in mind, we had a chat about how to take what she already does and market her expertise and her creds, which would fill a small volume, and build her a writing career with which she can finance her life. One has to remember that academics don’t reap financial windfalls. So over these last months we’ve been weaving a different tapestry for her life and today we added the sparkling color to the woof threads. Children’s book reviews. Why not? She already does reviews. She’s very good at it, and she has the expertise.
In fifteen minutes or so we had carved out the final section of new roadbed on which she could drive the rest of her life. All in all, a satisfying end to the afternoon.
The odd thing, I suppose, is that I gain as much satisfaction of helping her change directions as she does from having a new direction in which to go. While she may put in a few more hours a month doing children’s book reviews on her overloaded schedule, she might just gain financial independence and a broader future in her newly chosen field. It’s a win-win situation.
Today’s chat ended on such a positive note and the rest of my day went along happily being involved in several things and planning several more. I can look back at today and say, I did something good today, something beneficial. I helped a friend with a problem. I discovered I had a new outlet for my own thoughts, (I know, scary, isn’t it?), and I know that I’m doing something that I feel destined to do.
How about that? All in one day. And in case any wonder, I do believe in Destiny. She’s a friend of mine who lives way up north right now.
Hope your day was as productive and satisfying as mine. Take care and God bless. Write well and find your inspiration.