I am so tired…

…and looking forward to the weekend like I haven’t in ages.  I won’t be working overtime for a while which, on the one hand, hurts because: money.  On the other hand, I haven’t had a proper weekend in longer than I can remember, let alone a vacation.  So knowing I have the next two days without any pressing obligations or hours at work?  That’s…  well, it’s weird.  But good-weird.

I’ve been sick for the past week.  I tried going back in to work on Wednesday and wound up coming home again after less than half a day there.  I called again on Thursday.  I’ve been in bed for the vast majority of my time from last Saturday afternoon through yesterday evening, with a couple of exceptions where I just got stir-crazy enough to sneak out to my desktop computer for a couple hours.

This evening I’m going to an event for the Transgender Day of Remembrance, and Saturday I have plans to visit with a friend in the evening.  Beyond that?  Well, I guess I should work on the various chores that I’ve been letting slide while I’ve worked overtime hours…  but I mostly want to get back on track with my writing.  It is intensely frustrating that just when I was all excited about starting off book 5 of Midnight Moonlight, I wound up stuck in bed and only semi-conscious for a week. :/

I also finally got Et Alia into the webfiction guide listings, so I have a bit more incentive to keep it updating, too.  People will notice if I don’t.

Of course, there’s a whole bunch of things I want to do with both stories — I want to find more places that will list them; places where I can submit them for reviews.  Et Alia book 1 and Midnight Moonlight Book 4 both need compiled into eBook format and listed on Amazon and Smashwords.  Midnight Moonlight books 1, 2, and 3 all have some formatting edits that need done before Smashwords can push them to other distributors, and I’m behind on incorporating peer edits from the comments into Midnight Moonlight.

I’d also like to make a Midnight Moonlight audio book — which on the surface seems really straight forward, but in reality?  With all of us packed into one apartment finding time when there isn’t background noise is a serious undertaking… and I have to admit that I’m not too confident in my voice.  I feel that it wouldn’t be feminine enough to do Abby justice, but I also have this deep and abiding belief that I can’t delegate things that are important to me to other people.  I blame highschool group projects for that one.

Having an entire weekend available seems both like I have too much free time to figure out what to do with it, and like it’s not nearly enough free time to get anything done.  Whatever I do, though, I can’t really afford for it to be non-productive.  I still feel the pressure of being my household’s primary earner — and now that overtime is off the table, I’m feeling that much more pressure to earn more with whatever I do in my free time. :/

Admittedly, I think I’m putting more of that pressure on myself than anyone else is right now: Arr and Jae have both expressed at times that I don’t need to worry about earning more when I’m already the reason we can afford what we have currently.  I have trouble buying that, though, for two reasons.  First, if I don’t find a way to earn more out of my personal projects, I’ll always be stuck sinking time into a corporate gig instead of pursuing the things I really care about doing — my writing, or taking up comicing again, or scripting utility programs for myself and other indie writers.  And second:  I have no control over anyone else.  So if our household needs more income to make up for what I’m not earning in overtime, then the only person I can actively task to do that is myself.

I just hope I can figure out how to make that happen.  >.>  My desire to make my writing freely available seems to be at odds with conventional wisdom on the subject.  On the other hand, my awesome readers are providing a little bit of an income — the site is no longer a net negative on our bank statement.  But at the same time, Midnight Moonlight is pretty consistently ranked around #15 on the top web fiction list, and my other stats seem to be pretty consistent — it looks like I’m not really attracting more readers, and if I can’t figure out what to do about that I’m probably not going to be a financial success as a writer.  (I’m already a success by my own standards, though: people seem to really like the story, and I wrote it for people to enjoy, so that’s a win.)

I really wish money wasn’t such a big deal.  I hate stewing about it, and weighing options to maximize potential income against making my work readily available to those who might enjoy it.  It’s frustrating — especially since I’ve already done most of the things I can think of to monetize my writing without being a greedy bitch about it.  (I refuse, for instance, to entertain the prospect of making future books of Midnight Moonlight eBooks only — or doing anything else to set up a solid pay wall between my readers and my content.)  I even waffle about whether or not it would be fair of me to start up an entirely independent series that I only published in eBook format — or, fairness aside, if anyone would bother reading it if I did.  I don’t harbor any illusions about my current audience having come through the web fiction guide and similar sites or word of mouth: the only reason I think anyone took a chance on my stories so far is that they could do so for free.

Jae is pretty adamant about trying to get me to think of my time as valuable, and I know that it is — but I also get hung up on the thought that anyone who likes my work enough to pay money for it is exactly the kind of person I’m writing this for to begin with… and as such, it’d be kind of shitty of me to take advantage of them by making them pay money for more of it.  Because I have two serious drives going when I write: one is the drive to see how the story evolves and concludes when I’m putting it down on paper (as opposed to when it’s just a bunch of fluid concepts and ideas in my head) and the other is making it available to the people who will enjoy it.  And money doesn’t figure into either of those objectives — it’s just a frustratingly persistent requirement for everything else in my life.

Blegh.  This isn’t what I wanted to be writing about — I meant to be figuring out what exactly to do with my weekend.  I guess I’ve just had finances on the brain lately.  Anyway, thanks for listening to me moan about it, and sorry for the whining.

Take care!

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