It’s hard to believe how everything has changed this year, and how much we’ve had to adjust to. How many things we took for granted before and ignored, and how many things have now been laid bare. This year really feels like a turning point in history, and historians will be analysing it in the future, probably on a week-by-week basis.
I have a few life updates that are happening now, the biggest of which is that I’ve decided to take voluntary severance from my job. They’ve been threatening layoffs for a long time now, since the sector I’m in has been devastated by the pandemic, and I’ve had enough. I’m grateful I’ve been able to stay this long through this bewildering year, but at the same time I’ve wanted to find a new job for years now. As soon as my company opened their voluntary scheme it felt like the universe was nudging me for the door.
Its been a privilege to work there for the last 4.5 years, and it’s definitely helped me grow as a person and come out of my shell. I’ve also met a group of friends who have been there for me through some of the hardest days of my life, and I still thank the lucky permutation of fate that brought us all together at the same time. And yet, they’ve all gone on to new jobs now. And the role isn’t what it used to be, so the things that made it fulfilling before are gone.
And to be brutally honest, I’m not willing to risk my mental and physical health during a pandemic for a job that I mostly hate.
So, I’m leaping into the void, and hoping that a new opportunity might appear at some point, which feels really reckless now that I write it out. . .But maybe this is the push I need to kick start the gears on whatever happens next. Maybe I need to take this leap, otherwise I’ll be stuck forever. I know that sounds dramatic, but a lot of my older colleagues have been in the same role for 20 years, and I don’t want that. I never meant to stay at the job for this long anyway.
I’ve been applying for new jobs for the last four years, so I’ll keep doing that, while also trying to dive into freelancing. Speaking of which, I’ll be advertising my new editing and proofreading services here soon (and maybe launching my own website? With help of course from my incredible partner!)
As terrified as I am to willingly choose to be unemployed right now, I’m also taking heart in all the signs telling me that it’s time to start a new chapter of my life. There seems to be a pattern where every four or five years I go through a major life shift, and it feels like this is another one, even if it is on a minutely personal scale in the face of the entire world’s suffering right now. I’m so fortunate that I can do this right now, that I’ve been able to start saving over the last year or so, and can support myself for a little while. This is such a privilege and one I don’t take lightly.
I’m going to help however I can while I find my own way, and in the meantime if that’s offering my writing and editing and organising skills, then I’m very ok with that.
This weekend will probably be my last weekend working at my job (and I certainly won’t miss having to work every single weekend…), so I’m going to enjoy seeing my colleagues for now, and we’ll keep daydreaming of having a big reunion party next year sometime, when we hopefully get on the other side of all this.
I’m excited to at least have a bit more control over my life, and to work from home, whatever work might look like for now. I’ve got lots of projects I want to dive into too. Since I rewrote my first novel to submit it for PitchWars, I want to start querying it again, and see if maybe this time’s the charm. I also want to finish revising my third novel, my Venice book, and send it to my lovely CPs for feedback. Then I might dive into a new idea thats been brewing on the back burner for a little while, involving a dual timeline art heist/artist’s POV storyline!
I’m excited for what’s next, but I’m equally just as terrified. Between the election and the pandemic, and the revolutions ripping through the world right now, it feels like everything has gone upside down. I’m so grateful I can hibernate in my hobbit hole with my partner as we try to stay safe this winter, and that we can keep in touch with friends and family albeit digitally.
I hope you find something that gives you joy today, and helps inspire you, even if it is only for yourself. The world needs art and magic and passion now more than ever.
Thanks for reading, and take care, and Happy Halloween!