Going back again, maybe.

I’m looking into going back to school, again. I must be a glutton for punishment since I only graduated two years ago, but I really do want to go back. I’ve been mulling it over for a while now, at least a year, probably more. At one point, I had considered going back to earn my teaching certificate, which I decided was not the path I wanted, or needed, to take.

Here I am, years later, and I feel that I need to return, to major in a new field. Yes, I do have a Bachelor’s in General Studies, but that’s really what it sounds like. I’m looking into a career that needs a focused degree and certification. I’ll admit to a certain amount of trepidation, especially in regards to how long it’ll take to complete and the incumbent cost. I’m still paying off my loan for my most recent go around!

The fact is I’m unhappy where I’m at. I’m tired and I’m angry. I’m tired of being angry. Where I’m currently at in life is not where I want to be, it’s not where I’m supposed to be, but it is where I am. I can remain where I’m at and allow this anger and bitterness to consume me, or I can do something about it.

All I’ve known for most of my adult life is retail. I dislike retail. I’ve done it, I have moved up before, and though there are aspects to it in which I excel, the parts I don’t like hold me back. More than just that, I have an attitude problem precisely because I have been there before and because I feel that I’m not being allowed to do what I know I’m capable of doing.

Did you know that this is the first place I’ve worked for since 1999 that I haven’t been promoted? I have always been given a supervisory position. I’m knowledgeable enough, I’m responsible enough, and I have the experience to prove it, but that’s not enough. Not at my current job, and not with my current employers.

But as much as I would like, I can’t completely fault them. In fact, I should probably thank them for holding me back, for forcing me to evaluate my life and the direction I’m heading. Were they to promote me, I might be tempted to continue the rat race for financial reasons. That would be bad. Money has never been a good enough motivator for me. I need it, I want it, and I would like to have a certain independence, but that’s not what motivates me.

So what motivates me? Doing what I like, what I care about. What drives me is to get my job done, to step back and see a completed project, and to know that I did that. I also need to feel appreciated, which is something that management has never been good at providing. Also, I would like to find a decent job that will allow me to have a set schedule. My personal time is very important to me. I need it to survive, as a matter of fact!

I don’t know what my alma mater will say in regards to my inquiry. I hope I will be allowed to return this coming semester, though it may be too late to go back. I hope they will give me the chance to major in the field I’m hoping to join. I’m simultaneously excited and terrified by the thought of moving forward with this. I’ve thought about it for years, and if ever I’m going to do it, I would think now’s the time to do so, while I’m free and young enough to get it done.

Until then, I’ll keep the field of study a secret. If I’m given the greenlight to return, and if I’m able to go back this semester, I’ll give you an update and tell you what I will be studying. Until then, positive thoughts and prayers would be appreciated.

Telling you about my first time

all's well that inks well

all’s well that inks well (Photo credit: b1gw1ght)

Today starts the first week of my break between classes. I have three weeks to do nothing resembling anything academic. Just me and my computer, television, and maybe a few good books. As soon as my new book arrives, I’ll begin to read it for next month’s book review.

Of course I’m going crazy, obsessing over what my grades will ultimately be. So far it appears as though I’m going to pull straight A’s, but it’s not definitive. As soon as I know I’ll drive you crazy with my pathetic display of self-congratulatory behavior. I’m stretching as we speak to give myself a hearty and well-deserved pat on the back. I don’t want to pull anything as I contort myself awkwardly.

But while I wait, I did something last night that I’ve been toying with for a long time, but finally worked up the nerve to do; I submitted a short story for publication. To be honest, I think this rates higher on my “Hurray!” scale than my grades so. I finally did it!

Okay, I know this doesn’t seem like too big a deal. People submit short stories, essays, and novels everyday. What is a big deal, at least for me, is that I pushed myself out of my comfort zone. I sent my first submission. Now all I have to do is wait the appropriate amount of time to receive my first rejection.

Hey! Think positive! Yeah I can practically hear you screaming at your computer screens. I am thinking positive. I’m thinking I’m going to hear a response. Joking aside, although I really do hope they decide to publish it for me, I’m okay if they pass on my piece. I think I expanded my boundaries just by filling out the form and sending my story “Letting Go” to Agni Online. Everyone has to start somewhere and this is my start. And if they do reject it, I’ll send it to another site. Try, try again, as they say.

I’m also working on a short creative nonfiction essay that I plan to submit to Hippocampus Magazine. My essay chronicles my struggle with depression after the turmoil of my divorce up to leaving my job and spending a year unemployed. It’s set on my first day back to school, thirteen years after I dropped out. It’s nowhere near completed, and I’ll probably obsess for a few weeks before I submit it, but we’ll see where it takes me.

And finally, I still have to finish my rewrite of my novel. Once I’m done, I can evaluate where I am there. I’ll probably have to do another rewrite (and then another) before I’m satisfied letting this one out into the world. As you can tell, I plan to spend a good part of my time off writing. I let my classes get in the way of writing so I have a lot of time to make up. Then my last class will start next month and I may temporarily lose track of writing again, and that’s okay. By July I should be done and then I’ll be able to move forward in my life.

Hopefully I’ll also have a published story to go along with my sheepskin. I hope, I hope, I hope!

In the home stretch

sonoma coffee cafe

sonoma coffee cafe (Photo credit: justonlysteve)

I never got around to writing yesterday. Shame on me. To be honest, the next few weeks are going to be a bit hectic for me, so finding a free moment to share my wackiness may prove difficult. I many miss a few posts here and there.

I’m in the last weeks of the semester. I have two weeks of class and then finals the week after, and then I’ll be done. After that I’ll have three weeks off before the start of the summer, then I’ll really be done

At the same time, It looks as if my new temporary job is starting to finally give me some hours Not enough for me to afford anything, but enough for me to feel the pinch of time. So yeah, I’m probably going to feel exhausted as I lose all time to myself these next few weeks.

It’s only a short-term sacrifice. I have to keep reminding myself that this is short-term. It’s a little more than two months until I’ll be done. I can do this.In the mean time I’m still rewriting my novel, and it’s a significant rewrite with some major changes, project is due Thursday, and I have a portfolio to put together for my Creative Nonfiction.

What has me really worried is that I need to line up a permanent job. The job I have is not where I want to be. To be honest, it’s a bit of a regression for me, a step back into a career path that’s ill-suited for me, and frankly pays like crap. I know money isn’t everything but to deny its importance is stupid. Let me illustrate this concept in a manner I think will understand. I have bills to pay. I need a car. I want to have my own place again to do what I want. And I wouldn’t mind being able to afford to go out now and again.

So although my present state is short-term, I really need to focus on the long-term as well. If I don’t, I may be stuck here and likely will fall into my depression all over again. I really don’t want to start on that course again, especially now that I’m feeling a little better.

The one where I think about doing book reviews

BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS

BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS (Photo credit: jm3)

Too much to do and so little time? Welcome to the end of the semester! I know I have nothing to complain about, and in contrast to the utter boredom I suffered mere months ago, this is a very welcome change.

I have a few projects staring me in the face, and although it’s crunch time, I’m not sweating it. Not yet at least. My lowest grade at the moment stands at 89.68%. I’m sure I can raise that to a 90. So unless I have a complete meltdown in the next few weeks, I am sure I can make the Dean’s List. I’m not counting on it, though. I still have work to do to make it happen.

In addition to my course load, the too few hours I’m spending at the place of my employment, and my writing, I’m thinking about starting another project. I am considering doing a monthly book review. My plan is to review only self-published novels. The next part is how to choose which books to review.

My goal is twofold. One, I want publicize unknown authors and get their works seen by people who might not otherwise have a chance to come across those works. Secondly, I want to improve my own abilities to critique other literary works, and in the process improve my own ability to write. I know, I know, it’s always about me isn’t it?

I’m still not entirely sure I’m going to do this. I have had many grand ideas that never came to fruition and this may be another one of those failed ideas. We’ll see. I already have a book in mind for my first review and if the tracker on Amazon is to be believed, it just left Hebron, KY. I should have it in a few days. What I don’t know is when I’ll do the review.

I have a few technicalities to work out, as in how I’ll post it. I’ll post it on here on my blog, but probably not on the blog feed. I’ll start a new page solely for book reviews with a link on the menu bar on the top. I’ll have to figure out the how later.

Right now I need to get back to work. I have Grammar class in less than an hour and we will have a quiz. Yay! Ugh….  At least the semester is almost over. I just don’t know if I’ve learned anything there. Oh well, education ho!

Monday Morning Miscellany

2013-Participant-Lantern-Circle-BadgeOh what a glorious Monday morning! It’s April Fools Day and I have no pranks to pull. Wish I did, but I don’t. Just as well. I have plenty to do without having to come up with a prank, and with my luck, having to clean up my mess after I end up pissing everyone off.

I started my new job on Friday. It was just orientation, which took forever. I now have to wait until this coming Friday before I go back in. It’s almost not worth it. I think I may actually lose money on gas to and fro. I hope it will pick up after this week, but I guess we’ll find out. Regardless, it’s only a temporary situation while I finish the last of my college.

Speaking of, I’m down to last few weeks of the semester. I think I have maybe five weeks of class. After than, if everything goes well, I will lack four hours to earn my degree. Now I’m wishing I would have tried to cram them into this semester, but I didn’t want to overwhelm myself.

I have one essay due this week, another exam in Geology, and I have a paper to write from Psychology. I really need to buckle down and get to it. You know, I think I may have a quiz today. I need to hurry up and study for that.

Also today is the first day of Camp NaNoWriMo. If you are a writer, or want to be, and want a little extra push to get you through, sign up today! NaNoWriMo has a 50k word challenge during November, where you write a 50k word novel in thirty days. For Camp NaNoWriMo, you set your own writing goal. 1k, 5k, 100k? It’s up to you, but the biggest hurdle is going for it. You can’t finish if you don’t start!

pearl

Pretty Pearl waiting to help take care of your pets (photo Amy Ebert)

I started another blog yesterday. No, it’s not for me, but I’m doing it for my friend’s pet-sitting business, AB Petcare. Please check it out and follow her on her blog, and also on her Facebook and Twitter accounts. I’m trying to get everything linked up so that she has a unified social media presence. I’m still working out the kinks, but hopefully within then next couple of weeks we’ll have her set up on a regular posting schedule.

If you live around the Greenville, Texas area, and need to board your pet, check her out. She has also started doing dog rescues, and is currently working with a few people. She needs donations to help her out. As soon as I figure out how to link up her PayPal account, we will be all set!