Thursday, July 24, 2014

The Long Goodbye

I gave my notice at work a week ago.

After 3-plus years of working in public television, I'm moving on. As I came to this decision, a spider kept making a web on the driver's side window and mirror of my car. She did it three nights in a row. I'd drive to work (10 miles each way) and she'd hide behind the mirror until I got going, then she'd come out and wrap up her web and the insects in it for a tidy little breakfast.

Me, I ate my bagel with jam as I drove, keeping my eye on her as she bobbed in the wind.

I don't like spiders, as a rule. Except for Charlotte, and she's fictional. Mostly.

On day three, I started out driving more slowly than normal. I was getting attached to the spider, impressed by how strong the web was. I admit it. She was becoming a novelty, a part of my commuting act. Other people might carpool, but I had a spider. Other people might not park in a no man's land under a major bridge construction project, but hey. Did they have a talented-at-55-MPH spider?

Then it happened. I was watching her as I zoomed along Shepard Road. She was hanging on by one thin strand. Her routine was off. She hadn't left herself enough web to get back to the safety of the mirror.

So I had to say goodbye.

I don't have a snappy new job title, or anything remotely resembling full-time employment. And that's the plan.  I'm going to attack my latest book with a lot more energy and time. I'm going to write it like I mean it and then go on to write another book with the determination of, um, someone who might not get the chance to write another.

You should write every book like it's your last. It may sound overly dramatic, but you won't be disappointed in yourself if you think like that.

What do you absolutely have to say?

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