Friday, July 19, 2013

But what do you DO at the office?

It's true that I don't have an actual job that is paying me anything.  (Although just Wednesday, I almost got paid $100 an hour to sit in an airport for four hours, but then I didn't.)

In any case, there are plenty of unpaid things for me to do in my lovely air-conditioned office.

Increasingly, the first thing I spend time on is crafting my posts for this blog. Besides working on making this post the best it can be, I am also trying to write a few posts ahead of time, for when I will be unable to access the internet.  That way my reading public still gets a post each and every day.

I may write in my writer's notebook, thoughts, observations, overheard quotes, plans, goals, etc.

I look at my email and if the stars are aligned somewhere, I might even respond to a few.

I read the blogs that I follow, and surf the web pursuing my varied interests.

I do research for the novel I am trying to edit.  Currently, I am reading Last Call by Daniel Okrent all about prohibition, which is crucial to the setting and plot of said novel.  Although I am still reading the part when people are trying to get Prohibition passed, I am enjoying learning many more details about a time that I thought I knew a lot about.  (Insider note:  Daniel Okrent was a senior creative consultant on Ken Burns' PBS series on Prohibition.)

Lastly, but most importantly, I edit my novel.  What that actually means at the moment is rereading what I wrote oh so many years ago with a baby blue Bic in hand, making notes, writing down questions and comments both ordinary and sublime.

Here for your entertainment are a few of those actual notes:

What time of year is it?
What does he want?
Had the toilet been added on to the house?
When were indoor toilets common?
Not what she would say in her head.  Make it consistent!
If so, he was a lucky man!
This should be a longer scene!

Looking at my notes, it's obvious that I abused exclamation points way before I ever wrote this blog.  It's also clear that responding to these notes is going to make my novel longer, better, and ready for initial rejection and eventual publication.

So even though no one is paying me even one cent to go to office these days, I'm hoping there's a bigger payoff down the line.  Maybe someday it'll even be worth $100 an hour to go to work . . .

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