Tuesday, April 01, 2014

A Very Big Change

I haven't blogged for a while, because quite frankly there is an awful lot going on in my life at the moment, but I wanted to write today, because the times they are a changing for Maniac Mum... For a while now I don't think this blog fits my life anymore. My children are getting older and are active online. They certainly neither want or need me to blog about their doings in the way I once did. And since no 4 went to secondary school in September, I have found myself rather at a loose end (well not completely, I have written two books since then!), in the sense that I have very little structure or purpose to my day anymore. For fourteen years I had to get out of the house in the mornings to do the school run, and now, I don't really have to leave the house AT ALL if I don't want to. Which might sound idyllic, but really it's not.

So I decided in the autumn I needed a part time job. Part time jobs not being very readily available usually in publishing (which is all I really know apart from writing), I scrabbled around trying to see if I could get into teaching on a creative writing course as a regular gig. Needless to say, I failed dismally in that regard, (one university I applied to a) told me I couldn't teach for them because I don't have an MA, b) offered me the chance to take their MA (the course I was suggesting I teach on!) and c) I realised they wouldn't let me on their MA anyway because I don't have a 2.1) so I signed on with a job agency. To my amazement a part time job came up immediately. I didn't get that one, but after a bit of faffing about, I did get the next part time job that came up.

I have to admit to freaking out totally when I was offered the job. My life is pretty complicated right now, and I have two children about to sit vital exams, and I feel I am deserting them a little in their hour of need. Plus I haven't been out to work in an office for SIXTEEN years. I'm not sure I know how to talk to people anymore.

And of course, there's my writing. I will now only have two days a week to fit that in. Getting a job right now might be completely insane.

But on the other hand, I have always squeezed the writing in around family life anyway. I don't write every day, and I am totally undisciplined about it. Going back to a nine to five job, I hope will inject some much needed order into my working life.

Plus, I am a gregarious person by nature and since losing the school run, I have been going slowly demented as I have so few people to talk to in the day (apart from the lovely people on Twitter and Facebook, who do keep my sane). I am looking forward to engaging with real people in real time again.

And then of course, for the writer, this is an absolute gift. When I left work in 1998, we didn't even have email. No, really, we didn't. They were talking about getting it. In my first year of freelance I corresponded entirely by fax and snail mail. Unthinkable now. I've just had to sign a long declaration of Dos and Don'ts about use of the internet in office time, which made my head spin.

Everything is so different now in the workplace, and I think that will be quite fascinating to discover. So I'm  going to start blogging about that, as and when I can fit it in, and I might just find myself writing a going back to work as a middle aged mum kind of story.

Whatever happens next, it's a new chapter, a big change and with some trepidation, I am looking forward to it immensely.


hydra said...

Congratulations on getting a job! Wish I could. Mixing with new people will stimulate the writing glands no end! New characters, new life stories. I envy you!

Lisa Rullsenberg said...

Bravo and hurrah. Excellent experience I'm sure. Still think the MA course missed a trick getting you teaching but ho hum.

Kat said...

Congrats, I bet you are a mix of emotions at the moment, but it will be a great experience for you personally and writing wise! Good Luck and I'd love a book based on a mum going back to work :)

Georgina Troy said...

Congratulations, I hope you thoroughly enjoy your new job.

Jane Henry said...

Thank you everyone. I survived the first day! I agree Lisa, about the MA people. I was SOOO pissed off with them, but being English wrote a polite reply. I think I should have said get stuffed!x

Liz Fielding said...

Congratulations on the new job, Julia! You will be brilliant. :)

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