Monday, April 28, 2008
Structure or No Structure?
Republic of Texas rose
It's been said that having a boring day (or night) job is dandy for a writer. A boring job gives the writer time to think about their characters and plot. By the time she sits down to write, she is ready to pour out words like water out of a pitcher.
I've been a self-employed, work from home gal most of my adult life. A year long stint in as a bank teller while The Pilot Guy finished college, a disasterous attempt at being someone else's studio manager twenty years ago, and a few months working part time for a photography prop shop are the only 'real' jobs on my resume.
However, I've started from stratch two different photography studios in two different cities, ran them for years at a stretch, and had many satisfied clients. I consider myself a good employee, but really, I wonder, am I? I hate giving control of my life and schedule to someone else. On the other hand, I love not having the stresses of is-this-the-right-decision-for-the-company moments, too. I love working for myself. I love the joy of a completed sale and delighted customer. I enjoy the risks and challenges of being self-employed. I also enjoy getting a regular, if modest, paycheck without having to worry about if the business will exist next year.
For the last few years my focus has been on finishing the homeschool path with my remaining teenaged son. A year from now that path will end as he graduates. In fact, next fall as a senior, he will take a couple of courses at the local community college and fewer at home. I'm considering the age old question of what's next?
In fact right now I'm considering what my focus needs to be this summer. Do I get a quick and easy part time job (there by giving up major portions of control over my life) in order to knock out some lingering debt or do I focus hard and long on building a freelance writing career (with all its stresses and uncertainities.)?
Is it better for a creative person to just have a j. o. b. for a time to pay bills or should the creative only seek the path of creativity? Is there an in-between path that I'm missing?