So I’m still new to the writing game and, as such, I have to work for a living. I have to work for a living in order to pay the bills so that I have a roof over my (and my family’s) head in order that I can write. One day, I’m hoping the balance will even out and things can change. But for now, it’s the 9-5 grind. Or in my case, usually 8-4. But, whatever hours a day I work, it’s full time.
And I hate it. The sooner I can drop to part-time work and part-time writing, the better. But there’s a material need to be patient. I know that. I may not appreciate it, but I know that quitting work on a whim would be beyond foolish at this early stage. But the worst thing that can happen to me in a job has happened. I’m bored in my job. I no longer feel challenged or even remotely effective. It’s become a grind. Doesn’t help that the government In Their Infinite Wisdom have put a freeze on NHS payrises for two years.
I stay with the NHS for the benefits – and there are some. The holiday is good and the pension is decent. Awful when you reach the age where you have to consider these things. The balance definitely tilted there.
I’ve only ever had one job that I really enjoyed and that went sour because of poor business management. The entire company was put into jeopardy by one woman and her appalling ethics – or lack of them – and then she sold out. She sold the business to a larger concern, bizarrely for exactly the same amount of money it cost for her to pay for her new kitchen/conservatory/other random home improvements. Karma was served of course: a month or two after the company essentially folded, she received a tax bill for the same amount. Balance.
It’s a funny thing, karma. Sometimes it’s very obvious. Other times, not so much so. I do wonder how much truth there is in some sort of great cosmic balance. The phrase ‘what goes around comes around’ is the best example of this. Someone at work bandied this around earlier today and it got my restless mind to thinking. Just how true is it?
One example springs to mind… in a previous job, I worked with someone who essentially bullied me. Some years after this, I heard from a third party that she had needed to quit her job because she found herself in the same situation. I had no sympathy for her. I wondered if that made me a bad person for about six, maybe seven seconds. Similarly, someone else who bullied me at work had her wedding presents stolen. That’s quite karmic.
There’ve been examples of good people getting good things too. I prefer those.
Where was I?
Rambling. Oh, yes.
Balance. Work-Life balance is difficult at times. I work 7.5 hours a day, come home and then write. I set myself a minimum 1,000 word a day target. Sometimes I do more, sometimes less, but it’s steady. The amount of time I spend doing this is variable, though. Occasionally, I can write over 1,000 words in a very short period. Other times… it won’t come at all. Again, it’s a balance. I learned very quickly during the process of writing The Gildar Rift that there was no point in pushing something that wouldn’t come.
Here’s a good balance.
I went to a funeral last week. It was sad stuff. Tonight, I’m sitting here with Small Son watching Hot Shots which I haven’t seen in years, and which he has never seen. And he is laughing like a drain. There’s no sound in the world I love more than that of his laughter. It’s the perfect balance to a really bad week.
Onwards and upwards, eh?