June 04, 2008
What to do, what to do... my job teaching at the Local College is over for the summer (as of a week ago) and I'm getting some sort of steady income this summer in the form of 2 half-pay checks and $1000 for proctoring an incoming freshman writing exam. The math has been done, and I can exist on the money that is coming in--by exist I mean pay the bills. I have a bit o' money saved up that I am considering using as back-up, thus allowing myself to have a summer off to... do things. But the extra income from a part time job would be nice...

Here's the deal though: I'm knocking on 30's door. That's right folks--I'm in my last year of my twenties. Oddly, I'm not upset in the "Oh my GOD! My 20s are dying!" kind of way. Rather, turning 29 has made me contemplative, and that contemplation has produced the following conclusions:
  1. I hate my current job. This hate is no longer confined to just my boss and the institution that that employs me. Rather, this hate is directed towards the kind of work I'm doing. I love (most of) my darlings from this year. I just hate being told what and how I've got to teach. I'd rather I was given a check list of skills I had to impart and granted the lassitude to teach those skills as I saw fit. Furthermore, I had the chance to teach a creative class Term III and...loved it. I mean REALLY loved it. I felt alive and engaged and creative. Each and every day I got to teach what I wanted, what I felt was important and most importantly saw those lessons validated by the work my students produced in and out of the classroom. Which leads to point no. 2...
  2. I need to get published. If I want to teach creative classes vs. instructional, I need to get published. However...
  3. I haven't written in a year. After I completed and received my MFA I was totally burnt out. I tried to write and every time I sat down in front of the computer or with pen and paper, my mind ran screaming in terror. I just couldn't do it. I tried revising some stuff I'd written before, but convinced myself it wasn't good enough to even bother. Truthfully, I was scared shitless of rejection. If I was rejected, it meant I had wasted my time, and money, on a worthless degree. But then I got to thinking about it: I liked, no loved, writing before those three little letters graced the tail end of my name. I NEEDED to write... just write... without worrying about publication or failure.
  4. Yet... publication is vindication. And without this vindication, and acknowledgement of my peers in academia, I can't teach what I feel in my bones I'm supposed to teach. So publication is key. Growing a pair is in order....
  5. Which means I need a schedule. Finding time to write can't wait until "later" or "when I'm free." It must be found.

Writing is easy, folks. Any monkey with a typewriter can do it. Writing well, however, takes immense practice, patience, and guts.

Wish me luck.

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posted by Tina at 12:26 PM
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