Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Swaths of Time and Writing in the Margins

Yesterday, a colleague and friend asked me how I made money on my forthcoming chapbook, especially since we had been talking about publication delays (for those of you wondering where your chapbook is, the delay will be at least 8 weeks, which would be later in August--and I won't be surprised if it's a bit longer than that).

Well, the truth is that I may not make any money on this chapbook.  I do get some copies as part of my publication deal.  And I could buy additional copies at half price, which would mean I'd make roughly $6 per copy, if I sold them.

Clearly I will not be leaving my day job.  And I'm grateful to have this day job, along with my part-time jobs teaching online.

I was talking to the same friend about her jewelry making, which she's had time to do with reduced teaching this summer; suddenly she has swaths of time that she didn't have during the first part of the year.  She's setting up an Etsy site and seeing what happens.  We talked about how to price her work.  If she thinks about how much she spent on the supplies, she may price herself out of the market.  I would be encouraged to sell pieces so that I wouldn't have to store them--and she has a smaller house the way that I do.

Over lunch, I talked with a different friend about post-teaching jobs.  I talked about being a spiritual director, which she has no interest in, so I asked her about her creativity work.  Right now she's had some opportunities that she's had to pass up because she's got a very full teaching schedule.

I've thought of taking some classes and getting some certifications while I'm still employed at my current job.  But I don't have time to do a lot of the activities I'd like to do now.  When would I fit in coursework?

My spouse and I have often commented that in our lives we seem to have money or time--and when we have time, we don't always have the money to enjoy some of the activities we'd like to explore.

I wish that I could end with some pithy suggestions, with the big reveal that I've discovered a way of balancing it all.  I have no pithy suggestions, no big reveal.

I do have a plan for August.  I have been feeling a bit of despair over having several stories in my head with very little time at home to write.  I have noticed that there are days when I might be able to write a bit at the office--some people take smoking breaks still, so why shouldn't I take a fiction writing break?  I'll write one or two stories while at home, and I'll work on a different story when I'm at work.  At the end of August, we'll see if I've written more than I would have with my only write fiction on the home computer approach.

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