The verdict is in… I shall be a teacher in the fall. I accepted an offer to teach 4th grade at a brand new school. I’ll be a charter faculty member. The principal has already sent out a couple of newsletters that are extremely inspiring. 

I’ve already begun planning. My long list of action items continues to grow. This is the first time I’ve known this early where I’ll be the following year! It’s kinda surreal. I hope to find kindred spirits on my grade level! I’m looking forward to meeting my kids!

Here I sit in my familiar waiting game. What will I be doing next school year? I do know where I’ll be so that is a plus. My school system has just finished the transfer process. Teachers who have been at a school for at least 3 years can interview at other schools. Teachers who wish to stay at their schools can change grade levels. It is a complex process for principals as they shift, sift, and sort their staff for the coming year. People like me who started during the year are on hold. Since there are no open teaching positions now, I have let the principal know that I’m interested in applying for the Media Clerk position. 

Now I need to let her know that my interest goes beyond that of placeholder until a teaching position opens, probably in the fall after the school year begins. If I can’t get a position before the school year starts, I don’t want one at all. I’m an expert at being a part year hire. I don’t want to take over a class after the first day of school. I’ll take the lower pay in exchange for the stability of knowing what I’ll be doing. If I were to take another part year hire position, I’d be in the same position next spring! I will not be Sisyphus anymore. 

More to come…

I’ve been working part time at my public library for about 8 months. My job includes running the automated book drop, shelving, pulling books for the hold shelf, and weeding books that are in poor condition. I answer patron questions, but due to my limited role, I am prohibited from answering in depth questions. When I get a reference or research question, I’m to refer them to the Help Desk. This used to bother me even when I knew the reasoning. After a couple of months of hoping I could parlay this into a full time position, I finally realized I wanted to return to teaching.

I accepted a position as a permanent substitute, but I kept the library job. I love books and libraries! Even though the sub position is full time, it doesn’t pay all that well. Thus began my grueling schedule juggling two jobs. I was open to see what would unfold. In these last 8 months, I realize I love teaching and have a higher earning potential and future job opportunity in education than in libraries.

Also, in the last two weeks my copyediting business has been booming. I have three jobs in the works. The library pays so little and there’s no room for growth. I’ve come to the end of the road there. It was a meditative experience…shelving books and occasionally helping a patron. Now, it’s time to move on.

A short time ago, I had a goal to finish all my Scandal fanfics in 2015. Now, I am abandoning that goal, laying it down. I lack the motivation, inspiration, and desire to devote the time and focus needed to achieve the goal.

I began writing Scandal fanfics out of a need to process and explore my thoughts, impressions, and mild obsession with Scandal and especially the angsty, passionate, tumultuous Olitz.  During those storied days of old at the genesis of Scandal, I googled Olitz and Scandal in search of a place “to work out my feels” and “fangirl” in between Thursdays. Fanblogs, articles, and the twitterati were chock full of folks with the same idea. A fandom was born. But I was at the Scandal cocktail party listening in on others’ conversations trying to find my own group to huddle with. I found none. In my real, face to face, life, none of my family and friends shared my level of passionate devotion to the show. They knew of it. Some watched it. Still others indulged me in discussions…a little. None sweated it as hard as I did. So I was out there compelled into the 1s and 0s alone. I tweeted alone. I read fanblogs and left comments alone. What’s the fun in having a guilty pleasure if you can’t share it?

It was at this point that I discovered fanfiction and specifically Scandal fanfiction.  I read and commented. I commented and read. Soon I decided to try my own hand at writing a story. I wasn’t invited to anyone’s party so I threw my own! It was all worth it. Words began to fall out of me and my writing transcended the show. It was more important to me than the actual show. The stories were rewarding, but the biggest motivator, what kept me writing, was the reviews from the readers. The readers became my muse in many ways. It was as if there was an unspoken covenant between us.

The experience of writing and connecting with readers through the reviews changed me. It gave me the need to extend my writing and create my own unique characters. During this process, my fanfiction writing has been on and off partly because I’m still that same Olitz fangirl looking for a group to huddle with at the cocktail party. Even though the characters are a Shonda Rhimes creation, those stories, even in their states of incompleteness, belong to me and to the readers. #chrysalisbroken

Do you need a beta reader? If you are, I am the one. If you are a newish writer, don’t try to go it alone. Words are magical such that when they ooze out of you and on to the page, they change and morph. I’m not merely speaking of the banal job of editing, but also of the process of fashioning your piece into the best it can be. In my own experience, I’ve tried to do it alone. Don’t do it. You need champions who will read, critique, and question.

Contact me. I’m waiting…

My goal is to finish all my Scandal Fanfics this year. One of my readers inquired about the sequence of completion. I hadn’t really narrowed that down so I’ll put it to the readers. What do you want?

Link to my fanfic stories here.

List of Stories (listed in alpha order):

1 Back to us (BU)

2 Down for the Count (DC)

3 Harvest (H)

4 Not Quite Serendipity (NQS)

5 Stumbling Blocks or Stepping Stones (SBSS)

6 The Ultimate Heist (UH)

7 The Upside of Contempt (UC)

NB: I’m working on An Education now.

What is your pleasure? You can list in order of preference using the number or just type the acronym for your desired sequence. You can send me your choices in the comments section of this blog. I’m not going to put any time constraints on this request since I’m not sure how much of a response I’ll get. Just putting it out there.

What’s your preferred sequence?

Image 1Now that 2014 is in my rearview and 2015 is upon me, I pause to reflect and anticipate.

The first half of 2014 was emotionally and psychologically challenging. I think it was akin to what a butterfly experiences when breaking out of a chrysalis. I was very wishy-washy and unclear about key aspects of my life. Unfortunately, my actions reflected that inner waffling. I hurt those closest to me. I lost a friend.

In the midst of this, I had tasked myself with writing a novel that I planned to self-publish. By 6 months in, I had self-published the book! Hooray for me. But questions still lingered: What shall I do with my life? ShaIl I keep writing? Try to find a literary agent/publisher? Work harder at being a full time writer? Shall I return to teaching? Find another vocation? I began working part time at the public library which was good therapy and a reservoir for some fantastic reading. Shortly thereafter, I stepped back into education as a full time substitute teacher. By the late fall, I had two jobs! Loss and gain are inexorably bound like life and death, suffering and celebration. I am thankful for my husband for supporting and loving me through it all.

In the midst of 2015, I am extremely excited about what lies in front of me. I am committed to vigorously pursuing happiness. I am in love with my school. If a permanent teaching position materializes, I’ll be ready to embrace it. I want to travel more this year and in coming years so we’ve started a travel fund. I’m committed to fellowshipping with my family and friends regularly. I want to finish my Scandal Fanfiction stories! I want to commit to writing another manuscript to finish and shop around for publishing. Also, I want to cease agonizing over what folks think of me (only child syndrome). In many cases, folks are too busy thinking about themselves! Lastly, I want to be a lighthouse for compassion and love to others.

2015 here I am!


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