Monday, December 28, 2015

Back to Work

After the holidays, it's time to get back to work.

This is the first year in a long, long time when I didn't work through the holidays. I did a few business-related things, but for the most part I played, and watched the snow fall. I think I needed the mental break. I feel more focused now. I'll need focus! I have a lot of projects ahead of me, mostly creative projects, but there's always something to do around the farm.

We're sort-of expecting baby goats in February. How many, I couldn't tell you. Twins again? Is more than one doe pregnant? I asked, but they're not talking. They just demand more hay. Anyway, they need the barn divided, so that the new babies don't have to contend with big goats that are not their mothers, and so the big goats don't have to be banished into what will no doubt be a huge storm the day they're born. Because, as we all know, goats pick the day they deliver and it will be a nasty, nasty day. Ginger, the first doe to deliver our very first kids, was nice to me. The weather was fine and good, relatively warm and mostly sunny.

I doubt that MaryAnne will do the same for us, assuming that she freshened. This will be her first time, so we'll keep a close watch over her.

I have two big fencing projects, a fix-the-coop project, gardening stuff, and normal animal maintenance chores on top of that. I'm already sensing that there aren't enough hours in the day, and that's with the knowledge that I'll soon no longer have 40 hours of each week dedicated to a normal day job.

I'm glad I got a holiday before everything ramped up. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday too, and that you're safe, well-fed, and warm. Best wishes, K

Thursday, December 24, 2015

New Computer, New Life

It's amazing how much a new computer gets in the way of things. A big one for this blog was that I was auto-magically signed in all the time, so I'd forgotten not only my password, but which email I'd used to set up the account. Important, because I'd somehow cross-connected my Google+ with my DH's account, and apparently there's no power in the Universe that can untangle them.

This morning I finally decided to take a chance. Finally, I've properly returned to this blog.

Just in time to start posting about retirement from my day job to become a full-time writer.

Although I spent a number of years writing full time, there were a lot of differences between then and now. For one thing, I had small children, and less writing experience. Another huge difference was the publishing process. Short fiction was a vehicle for promoting myself so that I could potentially attract the attention of a book publisher. When I did submit book-length projects for publication, it usually took months, sometimes well over a year, to hear back. I had some personalized rejections which bolstered my confidence in the process, but in a five year period I believe I sent in my manuscript a grand total of three times.

Short stories were a whole 'nother beastie. I submitted quite a few stories, and managed to kill a couple of magazines. (We writers are a weird bunch, in case you've forgotten. When a magazine accepts a story and then folds shortly afterward, we accept blame for that.) I took classes, read quite a bit, became active in a writer's group ....

And then went back to work.

Now, being a full-time writer is a completely different thing. Not only do I have more experience, more connections, and not only have my kids moved out and onward with their lives in separate households, but self-publishing is now a viable option. With self-publishing comes a whole new set of responsibilities and costs. I won't get into that. Lots of others have written about the self-publishing process as well as hybrid publishing.

What becoming (in four more working days after today's shift) a full time writer means now is that I'll have time to finish the series of books that I've not only written, but published. It means I'll have time to work on short stories and submitting them to paying markets again. It means I'll be putting a lot of hours into a semi-secret project for a publisher, to be revealed later.

It means my life is about to change in huge ways that I can't predict. I'm scared, and excited, and I'm hitting the ground running. My office is cleaned up, and my DH and I are going to set up a schedule that includes weekly business meetings. He's been freelancing full time for a while now. He'll not only support me, but guide me. I'll need a lot of guidance.  I must be successful at this. No choice. It'll be a steep learning curve, but those that have gone ahead will show me the way.

I've a got new life to go with my new computer. Happy holidays, and good luck to us all in the New Year.