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taking time back
friday, september 13, 2013

seriously, two months without an entry was so not in the plan. it's been a bit of a weird summer. not a bad one, just different.

the big time suck has honestly been the editing job. the work being sent was nowhere near ready for actual publication, but that's part of the deal with really tiny presses sometimes: they take things others won;t, which means the quality is often highly questionable and the ability of the writers just isn't there. the problem with the press i worked for is common among some of these smaller presses: the owner thought these novels were good enough because the foundation stories were good ideas and the quality was never an issue. and she wanted to keep her authors happy and put out as many novels as she possibly could instead of working slowly to make sure the quality was as good as the ideas. i'd venture to say, quality was never a thought for this particular owner: she ignored serious story flaws, whether it was in the story itself or some part of the story (like flawed science), even after they were pointed out to her.

this was problematic to me, however. i take my job to help authors make their books the best they can be very seriously, but most these authors weren't ready for the amount of work it took. and it sucked time working on these seriously flawed books partly because they were so flawed and partly because they were so very hard to work on. i hated working on them. and, as far as i'm concerned, the job didn't pay me enough even though it paid quite well as far as small presses go. this one actually gave an up front payment instead of basing it all on royalties (if it had been all on royalties, i probably would have left early in the year; as it was, being paid less than $100 for what amounted to 3 months or more of work was bad enough). i would sink hours into 3-5 pages each day and have no time for anything else. and the owner wasn't at all responsive to any comments i sent her about the books i merely proofed (a much easier job, but one that proved her other editors had long since given up, if they ever made more than a cursory effort to begin with). it didn't matter if a story changed track in the last 5 chapters or had a serious scientific problem: they all got published anyway.

the work was stressful, time consuming, and didn't pay much. one of the novels i had was going to take at least another 3-6 months of work, assuming the author put up with me that long (and i have had authors run tot eh owner crying that i'm too hard, and she switched them to other authors). with the cupcake thing coming up, there was no way to it was going to work time wise. so i'm letting it go. i'm staying on long enough to finish working on the novels of one author with good work, but she's planning to self pub once her obligation to the press is done, and i'll be out completely then. gladly. i'm just not made for the quick turn around and turn a blind eye to poor quality writing mentality of most small presses.

and now i have some time back. sorta. once i start working on the cupcakes, the time will evaporate again, but there will be a couple big differences: for one, i can "steal" bits of time and work on my own writing (like while they cool and such), i'll enjoy what i'm doing, and i'll be able to have my son help. oh, and i'm hoping for a bit better on the income side of things. while it remains to be seen how well the financial end of it will turn out, we do already have chefs saxy works with making orders, so i take that as a good sign. i'm also thinking as we get closer to the holidays, we might put fliers on the doors in the complex the way the chinese delivery people do. but that will depend on how it goes at the farmer's market. if we end up doing well enough there, i won't have time to make extra sales. or, if i do have extra time, i may not want to give it up. we'll have to see. right now, the goal is to gear up and start selling at the fm first.

the rest of summer has had it's share of ups and downs. i've not lost as much weight as i'd hoped and recently gained a few pounds (considering how i've tried to stay on track, this is pissing me off to no end, lol), our altima finally gave up the ghost and the process for getting a replacement vehicle has been frustrating (though it has been accomplished, and i lurv the new car; the payment is reasonable, relatively speaking, but i much preferred not having a payment at all, lol), and we got to go to dragon con for the first time in 3 years or so, which meant saxy and i actually had a vacation and spent some time together. con was odd in its own way, but still fun, and we hope to go next year. we're planning on costumes, but we'll see if that actually comes about (need a sewing machine and, oh yea, time).

now that kiddo is back to school, summer events are over, and everyone is getting back into old routines, i expect things will be a bit easier than they were this summer. it'll be nice to not have my head buried in bad books too. how much time i've actually managed to claim for my own writing remains to be seen with the cupcake thing, but i'm already feeling better about my days. now i just need to get back on track with my old writing habits, which all went to hell when i didn't have the time to invest, or when i had the time, was too drained to work on anything.

feels like the past year or so has been one of constantly trying to adjust to new routines, deal with what time i have better because i have less of it then when i was bed ridden. or i should say, i have less of it for my own things. thing is, this is kiddo's last year in school. right now the plan is for him to help with cupcakes (without a second car, an outside job would be impossible), but that will be one more adjustment to make, and i'm not looking forward to it. not because of him being home so much as having to figure out a new routine that works. when i was younger, i much preferred a flexible schedule. now days though, with so much on my plate to do in a day, i'm preferring something more reliable.
or maybe that's just my husband and son finally rubbing off on me. ;)


word of the moment: chatoyant
having a changeable luster or color with an undulating narrow band of white light

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