That's what it's been since 2006 when my first novel, Arirang: The Bamboo Connection, was published. I enjoyed writing that book with a passion that is beyond expression. Every minute beyond my day job was consumed with writing, edits, changes, and finally the promotion of the finished 497 pages of adventure and romance on a grand tour of exotic global locations. I had a "second life" as I lived through Melani's adventure. The experience was all consuming - except from 7:30 a.m until 3:30 p.m. Ghost Orchid was also a passion of sleepless nights wrapped around the laptop.
The day job ate up a big portion of my day, including an hour's commute on a dangerous road that ate at my serenity for six years until I was persuaded to apply for a job in another state to make one last career change before devoting the rest of my days to my first love, the novel. Once the momentum set in, I could no longer make that dangerous drive without visioning myself in my new job, my new state, my new life. When it fell through, I was already gone from my day job mentally. I was already in a new place.
Out of the blue came another offer in a position vacated by three previous administrators in one year and desperate for an immediate starter, immediately. Believing this was Providence stepping in to continue my momentum, I cut my ties with my day job and moved on. I couldn't give proper notice, and my parting included a dart or two; however, I had taken a risk and was moving on to my last challenge before the day jobs were no longer necessary.
My career is one of exceptional success in my field; no glitches. This new position was one glitch after another; truly an impossible position to step into and create miracles. My skills and the needs for this job were a poor match. I was a fish out of water, an expert in teamwork where an authoritarian was required. The mutual parting was painful from many perspectives, the worst being my sudden thrust into the work market in an economy that is difficult. The competition is stiff. My contacts believed I was settled into a great job and were a bit distressed that I needed one more challenge - and took a risk that did not bear fruit.
There it is. Here I am. I have a resume at Linkedin, Monster.com and Careerbuilder that is exceptional in day job accomplishments, credentials and skills. If you know of a position for an educational administrator with a proven track record in post-secondary, career education, please let me know. It's humbling to discover myself wondering about unemployment insurance and the mortgage mismatch. Scarey. Knowing that I have lots of company is not comforting.
And my career as an author? Sure, Arirang: The Bamboo Connection and Ghost Orchid have sold a respectable number of books, but not enough to give up the day job - yet. Me, and lots of other well-known authors who need to keep cranking out the books to keep their head above water in their chosen career. I have quite a collection ofshort stories appearing in anthologies, The World Outside the Window and Romance of My Dreams each have a story. Anthologies are the frosting; the cake is the novel.
I share my newfound status as full-time author and unemployed education administrator because I am not sure who I am at this juncture; I still need the income and security of the day job; but I am now forced into full-time writing to remain sane. After all, I am accustomed to productivity; if there's no day job, I must fill the time with writing. The sequel to Ghost Orchid is on its way; and Virgin Odyssey is moving faster. Maybe Providence is watching out for me afterall.
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