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.