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The Joys of a Welfare Christmas

The tax gods deemed me fit to receive my return a week after I filed; and, boy, was it right on time. This whole being poor thing has definitely inspired me to pursue both my MFA in Creative Writing so I can teach at the collegiate level, but to also to, well, just write. I don't know why I always get in my own way when it comes to my writing, but if I'm going to be poor, I may as well be a poor working writer. Also, I think I may start a YouTube channel even though I know nothing about film and editing, but, isn't that the whole point of YouTube, anybody with a camera can upload a clip? Eh, being skint will make you adventurous, or just really desperate.

A Change Gon' Come

I have decided that March will be the month of livejournaling; I would like to get in the habit of meaningfully blogging, so this space will be a lot busier than it has in quite a while. Nothing much has changed in this nutty life of mine, except I had the realization that not only do I dread going to work, I also dread coming home. I have stayed in my parents home so long, we all low key resent one another now. Oops. I would totally rectify that situation by moving out, except my lovely full-time job doesn't pay a living wage; at least it's not a wage to sustain a body living in a major metropolis like Chicago. So, the job hunt abounds. I've also just requested some funds from my 401k, and using that in conjunction with my tax refund, I will pay off three credit cards and bring my student loan payments current, so hopefully that will give me some breathing room, b/c this girl is skint. I never thought I'd still be in this place, both physically and mentally at 36, but, here I am. So instead of crying (man, I really wish I could have a cathartic cry right about now), I am going to dig myself out of this hole I've been digging for 16 years.

I Ain't Changed but I Know I Ain't The Same

Life continues to be exactly the same, yet I'm in a really good headspace. I'm not crazy about my job, but it is in the field I want to work in, so I'm trying to squeeze every last drop of valuable experience out of the time I'm there (I'm shooting for a year; I reached my six month anniversary this month-so half way there).

I haven't written anything for my novel in almost a month, but I don't feel stuck, I think about my characters and where I'd like them to go everyday so even though I'm not putting words down on paper, I still feel very connected to this world I've created which I'm still in love with. I've recently started talking about my novel and my writerly ambitions with my co-workers and I think this has...freed something in me, maybe? I'm no longer strapping my ambition to my right leg, hidden in my boot; it's out there for the world to see and I better do something about that ambition. The telling of it has made me accountable to it and I'm excited by what I could possibly accomplish.

I just figured out that if I want to meet new people I should probably develop hobbies that include, you know, other people. So I'm excited about finding out what that will be for me.

Life is exciting! Life hasn't been exciting for me in quite some time. I can't wait to see where I take me.

Frustrated, Incorporated

You know that moment when you realize you have to change how you do just about everything if you want to live the kind of life you want to live, be the kind of person you want to be? Yeah, I'm at that moment; I've been avoiding it for quite some time, but I'm going to have to change the way I eat, the way I sleep, the way I work, the way I move, the way I handle money, if I'm going to be the woman I see when I close my eyes. I'm scared out of my mind, but I want to see if I'm up to the challenge. Well, here we go.

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And So It Begins

I just submitted a short story for possible publication to an online sci-fi, fantasy, and horror literary journal. And so my quest to become a professional author begins.

In This New Year

Happy New Year! I do not believe in making resolutions because I don't need the guilt for when I inevitably fail to do anything I resolved to do, but I can't seem to fight the social conditioning of believing that the first of the year is the time for new beginnings, so I'll make a promise to myself that I will try harder to stay connected to those I love and I will try harder to make new connections. Oh, I do resolve to finish the first draft of my novel! Let's take care of one another in this new year!

State of anutty1

I don't think I will ever be happy with a job until I become a paid, professional writer. I wish I could just Google how to become a successful writer like I can Google just about everything else. This post comes courtesy of the new job I've just obtained but will hate by the third month if not sooner.

Books

What I've Just Read

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. This is the first novel I've read by Adichie, and, wow, it won't be the last. Sprawling, emotional without being melodramatic, it got me inside of the Nigerian culture in a way I never imagined I would be and its lead character, Ifemelu, is a complicated woman, and I love complicated women. It isn't perfect, I would have preferred to strictly stay in Ifemelu's pov and there where times when I felt the narrative was rushed and didn't delve deep enough into the complex emotions the characters were feeling, but this wasn't enough to distract me from the beauty of the prose or the emotional heft of what Adichie was trying to achieve here. Yes, there definitely needs to be more than ONE STORY told if it gets me beautiful, full books like this one.

What I'm Reading Next

I've started The Woman Who Would Be King: Hatshepsut's Rise to Power in Ancient Egypt by Kara Cooney, which is pretty info-rich and I'm only 15 pages in, so I'm hoping it doesn't read like a 300 page info dump and gets to the creative part of the creative non-fiction I thought I was getting.

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs was recommended to me by someone who's taste I trust, so I'm excited about that. Yay, books!!

Also, I just completed my first day of mini-nanowrimo and I'm excited. I set a goal of 150 words a day and that feels very doable; I need to ease back into a writing schedule but I don't want to cause myself anxiety which will only work to silence my muse. Here's to a great writing month!

State of anutty1

I am still conducting a job search; for a month and a half I only targeted jobs in Student Services, the field I would like to break into, but after FOUR interviews and no job offers, I have decided to expand the search to the fields of recruiting/staffing and, that old standby, customer service. Yes, customer service, the field I desperately wanted to escape, in fact, went back to school for three years to get away from, but, alas, I need a job more than I need to hang on to my distaste for customer service work.

Signed up for mini-nanowrimo and am excited about it. Haven't written for months due to laziness, lack of inspiration, and depression, but now I'm energized and ready to finish my first novel. I would love to finish the first draft by the end of the year, but am not making that a "goal" per se so I don't become depressed if that doesn't happen. Contemplating signing up for Nanowrimo, but I don't know if I'm up to writing 1660+ words a day, my mini-nanowrimo word count is manageable (150) and when I exceed it, it leaves me feeling uber accomplished, but now that I am writing sporadically, maybe by November I'll feel up to the Herculean task of Nanowrimo.

I have an idea for relaunching my blog, even have a name, just have to begin to put in the work for it. That's what trips me up all the time, I have great ideas, but I can never seem to follow through with the execution. But I picked up my diploma yesterday and its tangible proof that I can follow through, so hopefully it continues to give me life.

I am now thinking of what program I want to do next, because obviously what I have isn't getting me what I want, but I'm stuck between pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing and Publishing and opening my own small print, and law school. Disparate choices I know, but I am a woman of extremes.

All in all, I am feeling better and I even sometimes feel excited about life.

Help!!

Ugh, I've just started the job search and I'm already ready to be done with this ish. How do people do this for months on end? Please, Universe, please, send a viable job in the field I want to be in my way. Please. Also, a date with Scott Caan wouldn't go amiss, either. Thank you.

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