I read that. Apparently a lot of people hold it together for the holidays, but then, as the new year hits, they realize that it’s time to make a change in their life.
In my case, it’s not a divorce, though. Not really. But in a way, I guess it is.
I’m leaving my career.
It just hasn’t been working out between us.
It kept demanding more and more of my time, but it didn’t give me anything in return.
It caused me untold amounts of stress.
It kept me from my friends and loved ones.
And it was really, really keeping me from doing what I wanted to do with my life – writing.
As a wise man (Sheldon Cooper) once said, you can’t be a chalkboard monitor and pursue something wholeheartedly. In his case, it was being a theoretical physicist. In my case, it’s writing. Not quite the same – although we both do spend a lot of time sitting around and thinking and then trying things out to see if they work – but the statement is still valid. Every day, I was feeling more like a chalkboard monitor (another blog on that later), and I had less and less time to do what I actually wanted to pursue.
Perhaps the final straw was when I looked through my favorites in my browser. I have folders with dates, going back to 2009, that have markets in them where I wanted to submit work. I never got back to those. They’ve been sitting there, waiting for me, or – more realistically, they moved on. They kept getting submissions. They may have even closed or gone out of business.
I won’t lie – it’s absolutely terrifying to take this step. And it’s going to require sacrifices. But it will also give me a lot back. It will give me my life back. I may still wind up working crazy long hours, but it will be different. I won’t be a chalkboard monitor anymore.
Last night, February 9, I completed the last class I had in session. As of right now, I’m completing some work with my part-time position, and then I’m stepping away from being a chalkboard monitor for a while. I’m going to see what happens. By the end of the month, I will be able to devote all my time to writing and trying to get published. And I’ll probably start eating a lot of ramen…