Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Rollercoaster

Man, what a couple of weeks.

Remember last week? Remember me being sick and getting rejected, all on the same day? Yeah, it got worse on Friday, when I managed to drag my butt back to work. My boss informed me that I was going to have to work on a day-by-day basis - as in, if there was work for me to do, I could do it. If not, I had to go home and not get paid for that day.

Oy. Damned economy!

Now, it's not like me and my family are one step away from the curb. My hubby is in no danger of losing his job anytime soon - not when he's working 12+ hour days, 6 to 7 days a week. He's the breadwinner of the family, and there's a lot of dough left to rise. (Tangent: does that metaphor even make sense? I've been hitting the metaphor/simile box pretty hard recently, and I'm not sure if I'm making sense. Let me know.)

But my paycheck pays for two things. Daycare for the toddler, and home improvements. Over 3/4 of my piddly little paycheck goes to daycare.

As I have previously stated, I love daycare. My son - an only child who's probably going to stay that way - gets to interact with other short people and work on important concepts like 'sharing' and 'establishing pecking orders' and the like. He couldn't get that kind of socialization at home with me. I'm the top hen in this house. Plus, I'm a mom who embraces Quality, not Quantity. I'm a better mom if I get the regular opportunity to listen to music that isn't Backyardigans or Thomas the Tank Engine and read things besides Corduroy and Dr. Seuss and talk about things that aren't related to potty misfires and who tattled on whom. I know some people don't agree with this concept, but it works for me.

But if I'm not bringing in a steady paycheck, it's hard to justify the expense of daycare. The prospect of being a stay-at-home mom again is looming large in this house.

But I have options. I called the employment agency who set me up with this job almost three years ago and left a message. Then I went by after work. These women are amazing. They'd already made one call for me for a tech writer position. (Although I have no idea if I am capable of being a tech writer. The writer part - no problem. The tech part? Iffy.)

Plus, they had called me several months ago about a position in their office, but we were busy at work, so I passed. When I went in to talk to them, I mentioned that maybe I should have taken that position.

"Well," the manager hemmed. "The woman we hired didn't work out, and we never filled the position again because things were slow. But . . ." Oh, that was a happy conjunction, right there. "We just got a major contract, and things will be picking up . . . We were thinking of filling it again."

So I threw my hat into that ring right away. I left feeling pretty decent. Something will turn up in the next few weeks.

So Monday, I was home. I decided to spend part of the morning sending off new queries for the Noseless Cowboy book. This put me in a bad mood, because I hate rejection.

But then the weirdest thing happened. Less than 24 hours after I sent the query, an agent requested the first 30 pages. This agent is in Colorado, so I'm hopeful that she'll be able to handle the concept of the Noseless Cowboy better. And I have actually gone to a talk this agent gave, and heard directly from the horse's mouth how her agency got 75,000 queries in 2007, requested fulls on 75, and only signed 7.

As the Oscar contenders say, it's an honor just to be nominated.

So things are swinging back up. My boss at work is tackling a new project, so I should be able to get two days a week (just enough to cover daycare) while I wait for the employment agency to get back to me.

And this agent thing - well, it could still end with another pass. But even if it does, I'm feeling tons more confident. Two rounds of queries, two requests. Not a fluke, but an upward trend.

This is going to happen. Eventually.

Programming note: Stay tuned for next week. Since you all enjoyed How I Met My Hubby so much, I've decided to tell you all about How I Ruined Valentine's Day. Seriously.


lucylucia said...

Yay, Sally!! It's only a metter of time.

Sarah M. Anderson said...

Thanks, Lucy! I'm so glad you keep reading!