Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Long Time, No Post

Anyone out there notice that I haven't updated this page in a while?  Hopefully the answer is yes.  Knowing readers are coming to this page is always a plus. If not, well, start visiting more often! :)  Anyway . . . if you noticed that it has been a while since I posted anything, I do apologize for the time gap.  Taking on a full-time job after the holidays is to blame.

Wait, don't you make a living with your writing?

Hmm, is there an answer that falls somewhere between YES and NO?  Let me put it this way, while living out in DeKalb where the rent was really cheap, my fifteen to twenty thousand dollar a year income from my writing was enough to live on (my rent was only five thousand a year).  However, once I tired of being way out there in the middle of nowhere and decided to move closer to my family and friends in the suburbs of Chicago, the reality became that I would have to supplement my writing income with a part time job, especially if I wanted to start saving to buy a house in the near future instead of renting (I've always wanted a house to live in, one that would give my cats plenty of room to roam around and room for guest to stay should they decide to visit).  Interestingly, it wasn't a part time job I took since no company with dead-end job openings would hire me.  Instead, I took a full time one with a company that is ranked within the top 100 of companies to work for in the Chicago area.  It also pays great -- twice what I'd make hourly with some minimum wage job, plus full benefits, vacation pay and sick pay.

So, what do you do there?

The answer is simple.  I help assist drivers who operate fleet vehicle distributed by our company in whatever services the vehicles require, whether it be setting up routine maintenance, helping with a breakdown on the road, getting information to them when they have questions, and helping vendors who work on the vehicle process the orders.  Sounds hectic, which it is, but in a way that I don't mind.  The time flies when the calls are coming in and since the company has no time limit policy on the calls, I don't feel rushed when helping the drivers.  Best of all, the drivers don't feel like we are rushing them when on the phone, thus making our customer service experience one of the best (we get noticed for this all the time).  It also seems I'm really good at making the drivers feel at ease when on the phone, which is good to know.  Now if they'd all just realize I was actually a guy and stop calling me ma'am all the time . . .

Any downsides?  

Aside from the commute during rush hour, which I'm not used to at all, the one big downside is that I now once again have to wake up at four in the morning to get my writing completed; something I used to do when working construction for a living in my early twenties.  I'm also having to cut back on time with friends simply because I'm so exhausted after work from having woken at four in the morning to do my writing (I now am usually asleep by eight).  Thankfully, my writing output hasn't suffered (well, except for a few days last week when I had a bowel blockage and decided getting rest superseded my ten page a day goal).  My latest novel is progressing at a pace I like, my new page total after writing this morning being 315, which means I'm just over halfway done.

One thing that I haven't had time to do is play around with cover designs, so I think I'm going to call it quits on that for the time being.  When needed, I will hire out the work.  Chances are, I'll like what these professional artist create better than what I've been doing anyway.

So, there you have it.  That is the biggest reason for my lack of posts these past couple of weeks.  Soon, once I really get used to doing my writing and working, I'll probably start becoming more frequent with this page again, but until then, most of my free time from work will simply be focused on my novels and reading whatever book I happen to be enjoying.    


Scott said...

Full Benefits! Great! (Don't forget to take care of those teeth! ;-) )

William Malmborg said...

No worries, I am keeping them clean! And will start making sure to do regular checkups now that those two teeth have been made right again!