March 17th, 2010


Yesterday at work, as I rushed around simultaneously selling books, handling the next person in the line trying to sell me their books, and answering the two ringing phone lines (which is my normal eight-hours-a-day now), I happened to notice a gentleman standing at the sidelines watching. After a few minutes, in the ten-second gap between the next call or question or customer, this gentleman blurted out, "Wow. You must be tired at the end of the day."

Of course he couldn't know that my real job starts when I get home.

My day job used to be a quiet, pleasant experience. Sure, dealing with the public (and especially with used merchandise) comes with its own set of stresses, but it was never so taxing that I couldn't look forward to an evening of writing.

Now that's changed. I feel like I have one of those seasonal jobs where the laborers go crazy during the months on. Except they get months off. I don't. It doesn't help that I often stagger home, so exhausted I sometimes can barely find enough energy to get in the front door, and have to deal with the latest variety of urgent disasters that have been levelled at HWA's treasurer.

I don't even have to note that I'm not getting any younger.

Until Iliad's owner bites the bullet and admits that we need to hire more staff, this will continue. Meanwhile, I haven't written anything longer than a 4,000 word short story in months. Something's got to give. I'm not sure what that something is right now. HWA is an obvious choice, but I've reached the point of not even being sure how to disentangle myself from the organization. Cutting back my hours at the store is a real option. Sorry, drugs are out.

However, I'm not ruling out ginseng.