Tuesday, December 18, 2007

End of the Year Rush

Note: I will get around to writing a post on writing communities and all that, but probably after the holidays.

Right now, my life is centered around end of year clean up. The first two weeks of December were a little insane. Editors wanted assignments earlier than usual so I was writing my little fingers off. I have a few other things to finish up before the holidays set in. It is a fitting conclusion to what has been a very busy year.

When I was a college student, I switched my major from journalism to English on the last day of my junior year. That meant piling up on English classes my senior year. To make sure I got the classes I needed, I took nearly all my writing requirements in the fall, and the lit requirements in the spring. My option was writing, so those classes were more important and more structured. I had a lot more flexibility with the lit classes.

And that meant I had papers due constantly. Even the two non-writing courses I took required papers rather than exams. At the end of the semester, I totaled everything up and discovered I had written 54 papers in the span of 15 weeks. That was over 3 papers a week, on average.

So in retrospect, the most important take-away from my English degree is the ability to balance my schedule in order to carry a busy load.

Over the weekend, in response to reading a message board post about someone who got 50 assignments in one year (and the marvel of others about doing 50 assignments in one year), I decided to count up what I wrote over the year. Well, that was a little hard to do since my computer crash destroyed my tracking system, and I didn't rebuild the assignment tracking part for January through May. But June through December, there were 54 writing assignments. I didn't count the editing assignments. Would I have liked some of them to be higher paying? Sure, but every assignment had a good per hour rate and each one moved me toward more work.

I know people who would like to write less and earn more. I feel that way -- to a point. I'd like to earn more but work about the same. I like the busy writing load. I'm used to the busy writing load. Heck, this time of year, as my calendar has a lot of white space, rather than notes about deadlines, I feel kind of lost. For the first time in weeks, I have time on my hands.

Give me the end of year rush!


Angela WD said...

Not me - I'm in deadlines till the end of the year. Oh, for some white space on my calendar.

Wow, that's an extreme number of papers per week. I guess you went into the right field, huh?

Patti said...

50 pieces?! wow...

and i can't wait for this new year...i feels a buzz of the undrinky kind.