Monday, January 18, 2016

I made it: I'm an editor

Well, here I am, an official AP editor for a prominent web news site. I wanted to wait until I’d at least completed my first day to let the dogs out. So now you know who did that.

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And let me just say: I love this gig. I love this gig. Even for my first day, I kept up a good pace and got 13 articles done. I also technically get paid to read the news. But those aren’t the best parts, not even close. The best part is that I get to learn and enforce AP writing in a much more in-depth way than I ever had when I was writing articles.

For some reason, the Googling, the hitting the books every few minutes, the research——it all turns me on, lights my fire, wakes up the not-so-inner nerd in me and lets it shine.

There’s not much I enjoy more in this world than correct writing. A well-structured sentence that coveys its point concisely and obeys all the rules hits a spot deep in my soul, a spot reserved for words and the connecting thereof.

And now I have the official 2015 AP Stylebook to geek out on whenever I want, I have endless websites and sources in which to gather information, and a drive big as Texas. It’s as if someone gave Jason Vorhees all the wooden-handled sharp things he can store, and then three more.

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In short? I’m in heaven and I’m finally, finally getting paid to do something that truly floats my boat. No, I won't be a millionaire soon or even buying a new sporty car, but I’m paying my bills while immersed in my craft. For hours every day, I get to lose myself in the best world there is: The world of the written word.


Monday, January 11, 2016


I ate Mexican food across the street from the parts store where I used to work a few nights ago. Seeing that the parking lot wasn’t full, I figured I’d stop in and see what the haps were. It was slow at the moment and a manager there told me he’d love to see me come back. I looked around and honestly missed the place. He said that other than the inevitable rushes that happened sometimes, it wasn’t bad.

I told him I’d speak with the store manager about a part-time position and bid him adieu.

Yesterday, a Sunday, I stopped in again because I needed Simple Green for some projects I’m doing. In short, it was a disaster. Yes, there were five employees behind various counters, which should have been more than enough to cover the small crowd inside the store. Instead, it was complete chaos because out of the five employees, only one was exhibiting anything resembling a sense of urgency.

People were yelling for help at the register, asking if they were in the correct line, wondering why the hell there were even tills if nobody was going to pilot them. One guy dropped his items on the soda vending machine and walked out digusted, his head shaking.

That is the auto parts store I remember; that is the stupidity I cannot stand to deal with anymore; that is why the store needs to pick itself up by its bootstraps and fire at least three-quarters of its counter people. The managers are all pretty good, but the regular mooks need to go, and in a hurry.

I looked at the girlfriend and was like yeaaaaaaaaaaaa, noooooooo... I bought my item and drove home, simply amazed that so many incompetent people continue to work at that place when there are hordes of folks——many of them surely good and qualified——willing to work for the same pay and vastly improve the store overall.

But they won't fire people. They just won't.

So, here I sit, torn between the facts that I don’t currently have a job and that my former employers are asking me to return to a place that is 100% fucked up, especially on weekends, for pennies over minimum wage.

I’m leaning toward taking my chances, that I’ll find something soon. I do love the place, I truly do, and I’m a strong player there, I just cannot deal with complete and utter nonsense. Life is simply too short.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

2016: It's gonna be wordy

So here I am, it’s the 5th of Jan already, and I’m doing well! First, a little update on my life: I quit AutoZone, got another job, hated that job so much I quit the second day after my two-week training, and now AutoZone wants me back. Do not want. My Ramcharger still isn’t smogged, the bobber bike still doesn’t bob around town, and the Jeep still isn’t sold. Also, I whacked my IRS debt from $33k to $28k or so last year. Excellent. Now that’s out of the way, we can get to 2016.

Folks, as my last blog post indicated, I’m not really cut out for work. I want to write. I type like a demon, I have endless ideas, and I have the drive. Finally. Not that I didn’t before, but I utilized all wrong. And when I say that, I mean that I didn’t write much, I only told myself I can write whenever I want so it’s no big deal.

Then, the full-time job made it almost impossible and it became crystal clear what I’d been doing wrong.

So for 2016, I’m writing, a lot. A lot a lot. I’m sending out my resume for writing gigs, I’m penning fiction in the mornings so that I can't get too tired and tell myself welp, there’s always tomorrow, and I’m going to focus on getting the unfinished stories finished so that they can be read, and by that I mean purchased. Yes, I’d like to make a dime in this gig, if that’s okay.

I’m almost 35,000 words into a dark romance novel I’m penning under a pseudonym, and I’ll edit and rewrite both Bird in the Hand and Nerd, Illustrated because, well, that’s what they need and they are both decent stories. I’m also going to read more; as Stephen King says, if you don’t read a lot you aren’t likely going to be a great writer.

Words and stories are my passion, my center, my being. Without them, life would be very, very dull, even with my multitude of hobbies. Words have saved lives, have won and lost court cases big and small, have crushed and created dreams——hell, when you get down to it, words are some of the most powerful things in existence. And yet, we each have access to them. All of them.

Isn't that cool?