Wednesday, April 3, 2013

IWSG (Insecure writers support group)

I was going to write about how secure I feel (since my first book came out this week!), but unfortunately it's not exactly true. See, last month I reached the point where I have to start looking for a job. I thought, "Great, I'll get a part time job that will let me continue writing," but I'm learning that the part time jobs available pay pretty much minimum wage. I'd need three part time jobs to make ends meet, which would rather destroy the purpose of getting a part time job.

So this week I need to start seriously looking for a job that will allow me to continue writing but still pay the bills. I've been away from benefits administration for two years, but right now that's looking like an alternative. I do NOT want to go back there!

What I want to do is work with kids with disabilities. I applied yesterday to work at a school that focuses only on them, but I also learned that their version of "part time" is 17 hours per week. I figured that with 30 hours per week I could scrape by on minimum wage, but seventeen? Not likely.

So I started going through my finances, hoping against hope that I'd find that little bit of extra. The rule I've made for myself is that when I have two months of savings left I will start looking for a job. By consolidating the various accounts I found I had enough for April without broaching that reserve. Huge sigh of relief.

When I quit my job I had enough money saved to last me one year. It's been nearly two. Somehow every month I find those little pockets of untapped funds, the extra bills in an envelope or a side job that gives me just enough. And every month I'm not sure how it will work next month.

All I can guess is that for some reason this is important, so as long as I can make it work I'll keep going.

My book did come out this week, and I'm on track to have a mini-trilogy (three linked urban fantasy novellas) available by July. Hopefully sooner, but we'll see.

So does this count as an inse-secure post? Or just a rambling anti-panic pep-talk?


  1. Life has a way of keeping us on our toes, Lauren. Finding that regular work/writing balance is one I know many of us struggle with. And it's hard to find energy to write when you're working at other things all the time. Hoping you find something that keeps you fed AND let's you keep writing.

  2. I'm in a fortunate position, for now, to have quit my job to write full time, but it definitely meant budget restraints. However, it's occurred to me that I could very easily be in your shoes in the near future. Funny, I came from a long time career of working with students with disabilities in the college setting. And I don't want to go back to that either!

    So glad I stopped by your blog-- helping Alex out with cohosting duties for IWSG and am loving meeting new bloggers.

  3. I worry about making ends meet as well. I have a very specialized degree and after moving out into the country my job opportunities went from scarce to zip. For now we manage but I know I'm going to have to get a 'real' job soon. Giving private English lessons isn't going to cut it in the long run. I wish you luck finding a job that can satisfy your budget and allow you time to write. And congratulations on your book release! (:

    A-Z participant blogging from Elise Fallson

    1. I think it's something that a lot of writers struggle with. We want to be writers first, but sometimes that's not possible.

      For nearly two years I've lived my dream (albeit without any level of income :) and that may have to be enough.

      We'll see.