My mum used to tell me “No ifs, no buts,” well tough because today there is a big but, and I’m angry. Today, because I was provoked by someone who is dear to me, but, for reasons best known to themselves, laughed at me and said what has now become the title of this short blog/essay. I believe that all relationships challenge us to be better versions of ourselves, so I’m using the provocation as a positive, as fuel to write.
The truth is I’m only getting paid for an hour’s work a day; actually I don’t get paid for my bookwork day which is 3 hour’s work, so it’s less than that. Still I thought you might like to see the list of what I’m actually doing. You may find your jaw dropping.
1. So, for the past two months I’ve been editing poetry and prose to a journal style for an American journal. I reached out to the CEO on Twitter last summer and ended up doing 6 month’s voice work for the journal, and I’m still producing one recording a month. Yes, this work is voluntary, and consists of 2 hours a day, 6 days a week, because I also read submissions and communicate with the writers via email, as I’m now associate editor.
Above is in one of my readings.
I almost forgot, I regularly upload a paragraph of my work in progress, a sci-fi (ROM/Horror), novel to my writing website. See the link above.
2. I am currently reading for an MA with Kingston School of Art, and, as it’s the holidays, I’ve submitted a play to a theatre in London, and a short story to a competition, but I cannot tell you which one as it is anonymous. This work was done a couple of months ago, so doesn’t count, but what I am doing now is getting a children’s novel ready for an agent as two weeks ago I submitted 50 pages of my novel to them (incase they ask to see the manuscript).
3. I lost my job in February and I’d been working on building a gardening website for the past 3 years, so during Lockdown, I began recording short film clips for the site, and 4 weeks ago I launched a gardening business, launched locally, hermionelaakeloveslavender.com – this is my paid work. This evening I cycled around for an hour posting leaflets for my business through local doors.
3. In May I decided to learn a new skill and applied for a loan to study to become a personal trainer. I’ve passed my first test (two weeks ago), and I’ve almost finished the level two course book. At the weekend, I handed in my first assignment.
4. I set up a fitness website, where I post content once or twice a week. This website was receiving a new follower every day when I was blogging daily. I’ve had to dial that down as I was designing my leaflets and magnetic cards for my gardening business.
5. Yesterday, I thought the garden in my partner’s house looked tired and the blackberry bushes were killing the flowers, so I spent two hours digging and tidying the front garden.
6. I pruned a maple tree which I planted 5 years ago, and wrote a blog about it:
7. Today, I launched my personal trainer business and stuck the sticker for it on my car.
The above is a link to my fitness blog.
8. I watered a sunflower I was given, and planted 8 new lavender plants, from cuttings I took and blogged about that on my 4th website; hermionelaakeloveslavender.com
9. I cycled 50 k this week so far (15k a day), as I’m training for my 3rd year raising money for Cancer Research. The ride is 200 or 300 kilometres, and I need to be fit for September.
10. I chatted on the phone to two of my five children (Not work at all, but still this relationship building takes time.)
11. I’m sure I’ve forgotten several things…
Not bad for someone who only gets paid for one hour’s work a day, hey.
Sometimes creativity is all about perspiration. I’m smiling now, and feeling better about myself.