Work is Hard

When you work four jobs, plus write and blog on the side trying to make that your solid career, work can get a bit hectic and busy at times.

I love teaching and I love babysitting, but it’s not exactly what I want to do for the rest of my life. Can I see myself ten years from now still teaching? Yes. But ten years from now I hope to have a few publications under my belt.

I can’t picture myself waking up every morning, going to work, then coming home to just sit around and wait for the next day to come. I can’t live in order to make money and pay bills. I want to actually do something with my life, make a difference, be important.

So I write. So I blog.

I want my writing to be my full-time job. Whether that will ever happen enough to pay my bills, I’m not sure. But I’m going to do it anyway.

What’s annoying about this is that you have to work really hard and work a lot in order to make this happen, which I have been doing and I love it.

But, as stated earlier, when you work four other jobs on top of it…

At the moment, writing doesn’t pay the bills. It’s not my career yet. It’s a passion, but it’s more of a hobby at the moment.

That being said, my other jobs have to come first. I can’t call out sick and write all day long. While that would be awesome, that would be one day I wouldn’t get paid and right now that’s not really an option.

Unfortunately, the world revolves around money.

My whole point to this post was that I haven’t made much progress on my writing lately. Drama has been happening at two of my four jobs and working such long hours, I’m too exhausted to do anything when I get home.

So that’s pretty much where I stand at the moment. I have my work cut out for me for the rest of the month and through June.

I’m counting down the days until summer (less than four more weeks!) where I can put more of my time, thought, and effort into writing and blogging. I’ll be working the summer, but it’ll only be four hours a day for four days a week for only four weeks out of the summer. This is a vast improvement to my 8-10 hours a day five days a week, plus another couple hours on the weekend.

This turned into a ranting-woe-is-me type of post and that wasn’t supposed to happen. I had a completely different point, but I guess this is where my mind wandered off to.

Is it sometimes difficult for you to balance writing, work, and anything else life throws at you?

rachel poli sign off

Twitter | Tumblr | Pinterest | GoodReads

Advertisements

Here, Have Some Excuses

No book review today.

This week was crazy hectic for me. I babysat on Tuesday and got locked out of their house in the rain. They changed the locks and forgot to give me the new key.

Wednesday I babysat for the same people and their chocolate lab ate a baby bunny traumatizing myself and the kids.

Friday, the same family, the same dog, walked into the back door slamming it shut on my face. I now have a bump next to my right eye.

I won’t even get into the craziness that happened at work all week.

Those are my reasons as to why I didn’t finish reading my book for a review this week.

…Those are my reasons for not finishing the book I started at the beginning of March…

Wow, that sounded really bad.

…To make up for it, here’s a picture of my turtle yawning. Which is exactly how I feel at the moment.

turtle rachel poli

March Wrap-Up

march 2016 wrap up rachel poli

Reading

I ended up in a reading slump this month. The beginning of March was crazy and I barely had any time to sit down with a book. I started reading the first book I planned this month, but it was slow-going for me. So I switched to a different book and read that in one sitting. Now I’m reading another book, bringing me to two books at once. I never do that.

So I was supposed to read five books and only read one. Oops.

With all this being said, I’m going to try to read March’s books and some, if not all, of April’s books.

For an updated list of the books I read and reviewed for March, check out my Reading List.

Writing

I didn’t get much of my writing goals done this month, either. I was supposed to give George Florence a thorough edit. I didn’t. I edited one part of it so that I could send it to my writers group for the end of the month, but that was it.

I also needed to research and outline The Lost Girl for Camp NaNoWriMo, which I did. So that’s good at least.

I didn’t submit to any writing contests only because I didn’t have anything planned and I didn’t really have time to write anything. So that kind of got pushed to the back burner for now.

Blogging

I got most of my April posts done like I was supposed to. I ended up being more blog-focused this month than I was with my writing. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I do have  a schedule to balance the two and I didn’t follow it at all this month.

If you would like to be part of my blog, go check out the Be a Guest Blogger page. I’d love to have you! Also, if you need a book review done or just have a book recommendation for me, check out my Book Review Policy page.

Overall

March wasn’t that busy of a month, though I made it feel that way at times. I had some family things going on, worked a lot, and there were two weeks during the month where I was just so tired that I had no desire to sit down and write.

The other thing about March was that I was more blog-focused, like I said earlier. Camp NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow (yay!) so I’ve been playing catch-up and trying to get ahead.

I wanted to have my April posts done by the end of the month so I could focus mainly on writing Camp in April. Now that I’m running two blogs, my blogging work is cut out for me.

April is going to be all about Camp NaNoWriMo and my novel, The Lost Girl. When that’s over, I’ll get back into a better routine with balancing editing, writing, blogging, reading, video games, work, life, etc. Wow.

April will be busy, there’s no doubt about that. Come May, I will post an update about my writing. I realize I haven’t talked about George Florence in a while so I think I’m due to let you guys know where I stand on my goals, instead of just a quick outline like this.

Even this post turned out way longer than I expected!

So March was busy, got some stuff done though not what I thought I would get done. April will be even busier with Camp, but I can do it!

Posts to Remember

1. March/April Writing Contests
2. New Chapter
3. Writing Contest Tips
4. Guest: Travel Like a Writer
5. Guest: Mapping Out Your World (World Building Part Three)
6. Guest: Dissing the Queen: The Politics of Editing

Inspiration Station: Keep Going

IS Keep Going

I had a super busy weekend and I have another busy weekend coming up. In fact, all my weekends are booked for December due to holiday parties or other events.

In between these weekends I have work all day every day. So far, this has been the longest week ever and it’s only Wednesday.

Work has been stressful the past two days and I can only hope that it gets better today and for the rest of the week. Then I just have to hope that the kids I babysit for are in good moods.

Needless to say, yesterday and Monday I came home from work and then sat on the couch and watched TV.

I had plans both of those days. Writing, blogging, reading, I still have to edit the stories for my writers’ group, etc. There’s also so many other things I have to get done that don’t have to do with writing or anything of that sort.

So after this long-winded intro (apparently I needed to rant for a bit), here are some things you can do to keep yourself going.

Read a book.

I guess this one was obvious. Reading is relaxing and–I don’t know about you–but it makes me tired after a while. So it’s always good to curl up on the couch and jump into another world for a bit.

Take a bath or shower.

I love taking bubble baths with the stress-relief scents. I have my iPad by my side with Pandora on. Sometimes I’ll have my book with me, a notebook, or my 3DS. Either way, it’s great relaxation and it’s warm for the winter. If you prefer showers, stay in there as long as the hot water will allow.

Take a walk.

Clear your mind. Don’t think about anything that you have to get done. Just keep going with the flow.

Hang out with friends or family.

Good company will always distract your mind and help you feel better.

With that being said, I had certain goals for December to help prepare me for 2016. I’m hoping 2016 is the year for me when it comes to my writing.

I’ve been doing well with my blogging goals (kind of), but not so well with my writing goals. That’s okay, I can catch up. December is a busy month to begin with.

However, I would love to write and blog full-time someday. As much as I love my teaching job (I think I would be lost without it) I wish I could spent more time on my writing and everything else.

In the meantime, however, balance is key.

Back To Work

It’s official. I have been back to work for a whole week.

I have a very busy classroom this year. My neighborhood kids are on the younger side; only a few have been to preschool before. The others are still getting used to it. By the end of last week they were all falling asleep on their feet.

My special ed. kids are all over the place. They’ll get better in time once they learn the routine and such. I have a girl with Cerebral Palsy so I’ve discovered muscles I didn’t know I had. I’ve been so sore the last few days. My body will get used to that kind of exercise in time, though.

I also started babysitting again. I sit for a family three days a week right after work. I also have two other families I babysit for on occasion. Needless to say, my days are pretty busy.

By the time I get home I’m exhausted. I haven’t been doing too much other than work and babysit.

I’ve been getting my writing, editing, and blogging done in the morning for an hour before work. It’s not as much as the summer, but progress is progress.

I’m still getting my writing/editing done Monday through Thursday and blogging on Friday. However, now I need to get into another new routine now that I have work so I don’t burn myself out.

Writing is going to be a slow process now, but I’m getting the work done.

I miss the summer.

On the upside, I submitted a short story to Writer’s Digest Popular Fiction contest. We’ll see if anything comes from that.

Write, Game, Repeat

I started that new schedule this week. I figured I should try to get myself into a decent routine now to make everything easier when I have to ease back into work and babysitting in a couple of weeks.

For Monday through Thursday (and Saturdays) I want to spend a good chunk of my day writing.

Except I can’t sit down at my laptop for six hours straight typing. I’m sure my fingers would get lazy, my eyes would cross, and headaches would emerge.

If you know me at all, you know I love to play video games.

So for the past couple of days this week I’ve been going back and forth between writing and playing video games.

Kris and I have been doing it together to make it less lonely. We write for an hour then play video games together for an hour. Then repeat.

It’s as simple as that. We get our work done and get to relax and recharge at the same time.

If only I could do that every day for the rest of my life.

Write… Play video games… Repeat…

Scheduling My Life

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

Summer is (unfortunately) coming to a close. School is going to start back up whether we like it or not; which means I’m going to have to go back to work.

I love my job; I love the kids and my co-workers. The hours are ideal even though the pay could be better (isn’t that like every other job?).

Despite that, I have to admit that I’m dreading going back to work. I’ve gotten a lot done this summer when it comes to my blog, my writing, and even reading. I’ve had a good system going and I’m afraid that all of that is going to be–for lack of a better word–ruined once work starts back up.

I work Monday through Friday for six and half hours each day. I’m also going to be babysitting three afternoons a week right after work. That’s a new family, too. I’m sure I’ll be babysitting for the other family as well, so it’s possible I may be babysitting four or five days a week.

Plus, Sunday school is going to start up as well. So that’s another thing on my to-do list.

My biggest concern is that I’m not going to be able to keep up with my writing. I love teaching, but writing is what I really want to do for a career. It’s hard to balance starting that while needing to have a day job–plus more.

I decided a schedule for myself about a month ago. I kept to it for about a week and then I went on vacation; twice. So I never really got a chance to test it out.

I don’t start back to work until the second week of September. So until then I’m going to try out this schedule and see how it goes. That way I can get as much done as I can before work starts and also–hopefully–be able to ease the two schedules together when the time comes.

Sunday: Sunday school plans; I want to write my lesson plans well in advance. That way I can leave Sundays open. I can write, blog, do extra Sunday school things, or relax and have a day off.

Monday-Thursday & Saturday: Write; Before or after work/babysitting, I want to get at least one or two hours of writing or editing done. For Saturdays, Kris and I will hopefully still have the opportunity to go to Barnes & Noble and write. That will give me a good couple of hours to get some things done.

Friday: Blog; My posts for Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday are the only posts that are not planned and not written in advance. All the other days are planned and written ahead of time so I just have to hit the “publish” button on WordPress and be on my merry way. I hope to spend an hour or two on Fridays working on blog posts. That way I can have a few weeks done in advance.

Balancing writing with a day job and life in general is tough; especially when you have a lot on your plate and many ambitions like I do.

How do you schedule your writing to fit in with your day job?

 

There’s Always Tomorrow

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

This week has been so off from routine for me that I am utterly exhausted; scratch that–I’m super overtired. I have a ton of energy, but I think that’s because I did’t have a normal schedule this week.

Usually, on Monday my schedule consists of work, babysitting, then home. Since it was Memorial Day, I didn’t have work and didn’t have to babysit. I ended up getting some things done with my day off, but it ended there.

Tuesday I usually have work and that’s it. Instead I worked, went home, then babysat for five hours into the night. I got back late not getting a whole lot of sleep.

Wednesday I usually go to work, babysit for an hour, then come home. I had work (and it was field day for the kids so it was super busy) and came straight home because they didn’t need me babysitting.

Thursday I go to work, then babysit for four hours, then come home. Again, I only had work on Thursday.

Friday I usually have work and then I’m home for the weekend. I ended up going to work, then babysit, then straight to my friend’s house for the rest of the night.

It was a busy week and work itself was super busy because one of the teachers in my classroom was out all week. My routine was just completely thrown off.

I barely got any writing or reading done this week because of it. I tried writing one day and then my laptop crashed, so that didn’t help for the time being.

Anyway, today is another busy day, but I hope to be able to get some things done later on.

Hopefully, I’ll get back into my routine next week. My babysitting schedule will be different because the school year is winding down, but I’ll be babysitting less–not more.

I can’t wait to get into a routine for the summer. Three more weeks of work–15 days!

Writerly Weekend

Friday: Work was a normal day with the kids, but once they left we celebrated with a surprise baby shower for two of my co-workers; one is a teacher in another classroom and the other is the school’s nurse. After work, it was just me and Dad home so we went out to eat together. We ran into a couple of old friends who we haven’t seen in ages. We didn’t talk long, but it was still nice to see them and know they’re doing well.

Saturday: Kris and I decided that we were going to have a huge writing day! We went to Barnes & Noble per usual and decided to try to stay as long as possible so we could get a lot of writing done. We ended up staying for an extra… it doesn’t seem like much, but we both ended up getting a lot more done than we usually do. I wrote about 7,000 words for my CampNaNoWriMo novel.

To top off the day, we went out with our other sister and friend to see the movie “Home.” I have to say that it was a wonderful movie. Absolutely adorable. And I want my own little pet alien.

Sunday: I went to church. I only had one kid in my Sunday school class. I wasn’t expecting anyone to show up because it was the week after Easter. Instead of doing a lesson, I decided to tidy the room up a bit. I told her she could play and she got really excited and asked to organize the blocks. The blocks take up a few shelves in a corner of the room and it always looks like that corner threw up. So, I told her to go for it. She did a really nice job with it, too. It took her the entire hour and she still didn’t finish.

I didn’t get any writing done on Sunday. After writing 7k on Saturday, I needed a bit of a break from my novel. I did however get some more Sunday school things done because I’m hoping to build a new curriculum for next year as well as start a new blog for it. So, at least I can say I did something productive.

This Week: This week is going to be like any other week. I’m going to try to get my homework done as soon as I can so I can write more of my Camp NaNo novel. I also have to edit the second part of Detective Florence by Wednesday so I can send that into my writing group.

Other than doing homework and keeping up with writing/editing and blogging, not too much is going on this week.

How was your weekend?

One More Day

Camp NaNoWriMo officially starts tomorrow… or tonight, if you want to get technical.

Are you ready? Because I feel like I’m not.

April is going to be a busy month for me. I have to take my Spanish final exam today and then my Spanish class is all done. So, I’ll only have three classes to worry about during the month of April. Yet, I’ll still have work six and half hours a day, plus that small bit of homework, plus blogging, reading, critiquing for my writing group as well as editing my own stuff to send in… oh, and I’m getting my wisdom teeth out towards the end of April.

That will certainly put my life at a stop for a couple of days.

Also, that doesn’t even include Easter, my cousin’s birthday, and my dad’s birthday.

April is going to be ridiculously busy when it’s usually not. But I can’t worry too much about it.

Aside from my Spanish exam, I already finished all my homework for this week. So starting tomorrow I won’t have school to worry about so I’m hoping to get a great head-start on NaNo.

Good luck, everyone!