Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Feedback, progress and thoughts

Occasionally something random happens and it creates an opportunity for you to take steps you have been thinking of but unable to take to date. I managed finally to get a job. Yeah.... Not in the sciences as such. I'm now a Specialist Buyer for a large Academic Booksellers. This is a role which suites me to a tee. It's one I'm happy in and has opened the door to many other opportunities. I get to meet publishers and their reps from many areas. I get to explore the events organising side of things (experience I have from organising Comics events and conferences previously come in handy here). I also have a chance to read and watch whatever I fancy and write about what I read as a professional - Book and DVD reviews here I come.

It's the realisation, that I might be able to take the step into professional writing, which has been tempting me for a long time, which has prompted me into getting feedback from another professional writer I respect and trust. Today, a few months after asking if he'd be willing to give some feedback, I've finally had the courage to send the Professional writer (he writes scripts, books and more; plus has extensive editorial experience) some of my stuff. I've linked to the Cheryl Bainbridge mini story and sent a few chapters of a story I worked on a while ago. Right now I want to know if I have the skills needed to potentially take that next step. I have seriously started to think of ditching the thesis and putting the energy and time into the set of potential sell able works I've been collating notes on for a while. That children's book (which has already got a publishers rep interested); the couple of scripts which are begging to be wrote (or should I say attempted as I've never written a script before) and the couple of novels which I have been brewing to the point of them almost being self writing.

All this is giving me a chance to ask the questions - Do I really need to finish my thesis? Will I gain anything more from battling my way through something I hate? The answers right now are resounding No's.

It's not as if I will learn how to handle the editing process (I've already published 3 papers in journals). It's not as if it will teach me stamina (after almost 5 years of battling on it may be the skill of walking away which is more valuable to learn). What have I got left to learn from my thesis? Any comments welcome.

Monday, 6 June 2011

The endless hunt for fulfilment

I'm still hunting harder than I've ever done.
Looking for a job to come,
Looking like I'm the only one*. The endless hunt for fulfilment

*Instead of the 200+ people who seem to be going for my jobs.

Yes, 200+ people applying for the roles I'm applying for. Seems the economy is screwed and the sciences even more so.
I've decided plan B is not working. Time to really think about a return to plan A, or a variant of it. Plan A.2. Maybe someone out there wants to employ a logical/organised person with a passion for acting/singing and writing. Experience as a project manager and as retail manager. Flexible and able to take on most roles (not phone sales or market research).

I've found 2 roles I could do stood on my head and be happy with at the Federation of Scottish Theatre - I can indulge my love of the creative without feeling a fraud for being hyper efficient, organised and logical. Who knows, they may like me. I may get a call back.

Here's looking at you kid ;) Embrace yourself entirely, because you can only find happiness if you do.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Balancing jobseeking, thesis writing and fiction

I haven't written for a while. Well, not on my blog. Though I have started a larger blog project which is coming along swimmingly. May mention it here one day.
My time has been spent finding a way to balance a lack of job and therefore the need to find a job, writing papers and my thesis, and what still feels like a guilty pleasure - writing fiction.
Why is it that what I really enjoy makes me feel guilty? Possibly because I don't see a way to make it into a living. Having said that, I have decided to have a wee plunge. I'm going to spend a few days working on a short story for a competition, which if I am talented enough to win will allow me a couple of months breathing space to carry on writing everything else. Who knows, maybe I'll become a fiction writer with a love for science instead of a struggling scientist with the passion for fiction writing. As a friend of mine writes on his blog - Onwards.