Sunday, June 03, 2007

Back to the slave mines

Tomorrow it's back to work for me. The first couple of weeks will probably be a hard adjustment for me, as I try to get used to not being the person in charge, and as I try to adjust to being on my feet for 8 or 9 hours a day, and as I try to squeeze all of my "fun" work into the time allowed by my "real" work. As a result, my posting here might drop off for a bit, but I'll get it back quickly...unless of course you guys want to hear me saying over and over again, "I can't believe I have to do something that doesn't make any difference in the world."

Didn't think so...


Anonymous said...


Did you go back to Subway because you had to, or because it was easier than pursuing a way to earn a living doing something you'd enjoy more? In another post you said that all of the good jobs were on the other side of town, you don't drive, and either cannot or will not move to be close enough to those jobs to commute. I don't drive either and know that many if not most cities are set up for the convenience of drivers, so while the jobs might be close enough the grocery store, cheap housing and other necessities may not be.

I think the problem -- of you finding a job that will work for you -- can be tackled much like writing a good SF story. First, I'd want to know what your priorities are. I know something of your background and interests, but not how they stack up, or what sacrifices you're willing to make in order to reach certain goals. There's SF, cycling, heavy metal, psychology, environmental issues, and so on.

If writing SF for a living is a top goal, I can think of three main options; in any case, you'll continue to write and submit SF.

One) get a paying job somewhere in the industry, whether with one of the major book publishers, a comic book publisher, a magazine like Locus or Asimov's, for the television or film industry, such as the SciFi channel. This would probably require a move to the East or West Coast, as well as plenty of research, networking, working your way up, and so on.

Two) you could get a job in one of the sciences -- as a lab tech or a nurse in a psych ward, for ex. -- or pursue a job at one of the nonfiction magazines, such as Psychology Today or Science News, in any case you'd have some first-hand experience and be required to stay on top of the field, which could probably contribute more to your SF than working for Subway.

3) is a kind of easy way out, in a number of ways. A job in television or as a nurse in a psych ward, for ex., may contribute more directly to your SF, but they can also be very draining. So you can find a job you'll enjoy, which won't take a lot out of you and may give you plenty off time on the clock to daydream or jot down ideas. I've gone this route as a parking lot attendant or janitor. For you, i don't know, perhaps a job that involves cycling or heavy metal, such as building or servicing bikes, getting involved in racing or tours, selling CDs or working for a studio or producers of heavy metal, something like that, even touring as a roadie.

There are always options. There is always a way.

Robert E. Porter

J Erwine said...

The main reason I went back was money. It was the only job I could find that would really pay me enough to survive. The Denver area is ridiculously expensive, and since I live alone, I have to pay all of the bills it was a money issue.

I had thought about jobs in other parts of the country, but there are reasons for my staying in Denver (reasons I won't discuss in a blog) that have kept me here. It may be a bad decision on my part, but we'll see.

None of it might you'll see from my next blog post.