The plan this summer was to work as many hours as I could manage at the restaurant during peak tourist season so that I could drop to less than part time through the winter and write for six months.
It’s beginning to look like I won’t be able to stick entirely to that goal. I’m still too far behind on my savings plan to be nearly unemployed for six months. I’m now looking at part-time, which should still allow me to write quite a lot.
I’ve made a list of all the projects that need to be accomplished before winter to set the house up well for the rainy season, as well as a list of projects to keep me busy through the dark months. Primarily…re-writing and polishing Plague of Gargoyles for publication. Continued on the list of projects are plans to move forward with self-sustainability on the cottagestead and re-connecting with the public and my reader base. (working this much through the summer has made it nearly impossible to answer emails or connect with people)
While summer work has allowed me to implement many of the projects to get the property one step closer to self-sustainable so I can write more, it has also meant much of my funds have gone directly to installing the garden, fruit trees, bee hives, chickens, ducks, trout (total fail), and the emergency car repairs, purchase, and some medical needs (emergency room visits for the bee sting, and eyelash allergy catastrophe). On the bright side, I wouldn’t have been able to afford a 600$ eye doctor bill if I hadn’t been working so much at the restaurant, so it all came out as a wash, really.
Such it is with walking the tightrope as a creative independent refusing to be locked into a corporate stalemate of non-productivity. Finances seem to be perpetually on the edge. I admit that occasionally I browse the corporate hiring ads and look at the project manager positions, and regulatory managers…then get the heebs and shudder. Nope. I’ll have to keep figuring it out on the fly without the net.
I need to keep writing these books, and I can’t do that when I’m on the clock for someone else at a corporate 9-5. I’ve proven this again and again over the last two decades of writing.
So, back to the drawing board on cost management and planning. Round and round it goes. With that said, I know there are patrons who would like to contribute to the cost of production and writing, but I have put my patreon account on hiatus for the next couple of months. Mostly, because I am currently spread too thin to make my monthly updates and rewards, but also because I’ve been noticing a trend with patron credit card denials. (36% of pledges to my account were declined this last month). I can’t help but worry that Patrons are so willing and helpful that they are finding that the constant pledge to support my work is taking a financial toll on them. This hiatus will allow us all some breathing room, me for the time to collect myself, and patrons a chance to consider their financial positions.
In the meantime, life is speeding along. Heavy hours on the server floor have made the summer whoosh by. My brain is full of new writing and plot tweaks that are just waiting for my schedule to open up so I can get them down, as well as new sculpting designs piling up in the back of my brain. I expect when my life becomes more breathable, there will be a rush of creative surge and I’ll go quiet and into the build space to pound out as much as I can.
For now, here’s a couple of photos of the cottage life. The chickens are finally laying eggs, and the garden is beginning to produce some tasty nibbles.
I hope the summer is treating you all well!