Thursday, March 22, 2007

Will Write for Food

I had lunch yesterday with my friend, KK. Thai food. It was delicious.

Her oldest kid is the same age as The Child. We met at church, bonding during our months of pregnancy. She and her family used to live in our 'hood, then her husband got a job that took them to Rochester, New York. They all still consider Seattle home.

KK works part-time for a law firm in town and is brought in a couple of times a year to work on cases or whatever. This was a pretty quick visit but we made time yesterday. It was one of those really perfect lunches. Not so much because of the food (although the peanut sauce was divine) but because we are both in very similar places in our lives. We talked about our need for work that really connects to our values, the change that we're both going through in terms of having our kids getting older and the consequent shift in how we want to be using our time. When your kid is in school all day and your an at-home mom it starts becoming very easy to waste time. Lots of time. We are both superfantasically good at that, it turns out. We get sidetracked from the meaningful and come to the end of the day going "Oh, right. I should have done x, y or z". But by then it's bedtime.

So we talked about stuff like that and our quest for new purpose. And the best thing about it was those moments when one of us would say to the other, "I know exactly what you are talking about". It was part confession, part strategy session, part booster club.

I walked away from lunch thinking about the last month. I have been so focused on finding The Job that I've neglected the one thing I know I love: writing. Besides the blog, I've written nothing. I've completely neglected my two book projects. And I realized something else. Before I discovered this cool gig opportunity, I wasn't all that jiggy with the idea of going back to work. Now I am. I realize that I'm ready for something else. And that's a good thing, because some extra money would be good. But more than that, I realized that the search for a Job shouldn't get in the way of my writing. And it especially shouldn't in these days/weeks/months before I find something.

Plus, I had some email conversations with Absent Amy a few months ago about next steps in my writing career and the main thing she told me was to figure out what I was passionate about and write about that. At the time I wasn't sure what that might be. 'Cause I'm passionate about a couple of things. What the last month has done is sharpen my focus. I want to write about food. Articles. Books. Maybe a cookbook. And I want to get those things published. A month ago I didn't have a clue, now I do. That is really superfantastic.

So I made a pledge to myself to use the time while I have it to focus on those projects, to treat them as my work and to do that every day. Starting today.

This is all the more important because on Tuesday I got a stardard boiler plate email from the cool gig that said "thanks but no thanks". Was I shocked? Yep. I thought sure I'd get an interview. And when I read that they were going to "pursue candidates whose qualifications more closely match" what they are looking for I admit my first thought was a rather bitchy, "Golly, I thought Nigella Lawson already had a job". Between you and me, I cried a little. It doesn't feel that great to be told that you aren't qualified for something that you know you are completely qualified to do. And yeah, yesterday I walked around feeling like I'd been kicked in the gut.

But I'm getting over it. Because until this came along, there were a lot of things I hadn't figured out. This served, if nothing else, to help me become more clear about that. So that's a good thing. I said all along that just because it sounded perfect didn't mean it would actually be perfect for me. I still believe that. The right thing is going to come along in the fullness of time. But between now and then, I'm going to write some superfantastic stuff. I promise. Watch out, world.

Nothing like a good dose of rejection to put a little fire in one's belly.

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Blogger Nicole opined...

which means the adventures of lent are far from over. I'd buy any cookbook of yours. And I'd buy copies for my other friends. And I'd write fabulous reviews of it on my blog (widely read, by 50) and on amazon. And I'd translate it into French and put it into metric and get it published here.

March 22, 2007 10:35 AM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Yeah, Nicole, there certainly is something very powerful about all this crap happening in Lent! And thank you. I'll take you up on all of that. You rock.

March 22, 2007 10:40 AM  
Blogger gina opined...

I'm sorry you didn't get the gig, Lorraine - sorry for THEM for being so shortsighted! But I know exactly how you feel. The same thing happened to me (not the not qualified part, but the not getting a job I had decided I wanted) about 3 years ago. You know what I learned? That God knew exactly what He was doing! Turned out the guy I would have worked for retired (and I like him a lot), other things blew up in the face of the guy they did hire and he just resigned, and I got three really nice raises that took my pay way over what they were offering. So, it all worked out for the best, even though at the time, I cried. I know the same thing is going to happen for you too!

That said, they're still stupid idiots for not recognizing how perfect for the job you are!

March 22, 2007 11:03 AM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Well, thanks, Gina. It's all good.

March 22, 2007 1:12 PM  
Blogger Kendall opined...

Let the fire burn! But not the food.

Anyway, I love your attitude, you have it right on, the right thing will come along, until then keep writing YOUR stuff, because I happen to believe THAT is the right thing for you long term, not just as a short term solution!

Could you reserve a signed copy of the cookbook for me now please?

March 22, 2007 1:52 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Consider it done, baby.

March 22, 2007 1:59 PM  
Blogger Renee opined...

I'm sorry.

But I'm glad you are still able to find the silver lining in it all...

March 22, 2007 2:19 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Thanks, Renee. It's by grace that I didn't decide to wallow longer. One day of biting my pillow was sufficient.

March 22, 2007 2:40 PM  
Blogger Jon opined...

We need a Nigella here in the States.
You cook way better than she does.
Ina is a cow.
Rachel Ray is over exposed.
Sarah is boring.
And Julia is dead.

We NEED you!

March 22, 2007 2:42 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Now, now.

My boobs aren't as big as Nigella.
I think Ina is a hoot.
Sarah is boring. But I'm sure she's a very nice lady.
Julia is, sadly, dead.
And I still love Rachael. Although she is over-exposed. I guess this means I should put the deal with Velveeta on hold.

But thanks for the encouragment, doll face.

March 22, 2007 2:46 PM  
Blogger Iwanski opined...

Great entry today.

This is why you are correct when you say you should be writing.

March 22, 2007 3:10 PM  
Anonymous Jay opined...

That was the most pretentious, self indulgent, utter twaddle I have ever read.

March 22, 2007 3:31 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Thanks, Iwanski.

I have plenty more where that came from, Jay.

March 22, 2007 3:55 PM  
Blogger Sling opined...

"Golly, I thought Nigella Lawson already had a job". ...Lmao!
Sorry you didn't get the interview lorraine.Gina is right,God puts us where he wants us.You have a plan,and the talent to make it happen.. :)

March 22, 2007 6:16 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

You da bomb, Sling. Hug a redwood for me.

March 22, 2007 6:54 PM  
Blogger rosemary opined...

What is utter twaddle??? A dessert? You should get the recipe fast....maybe it is a pudding.

March 22, 2007 7:33 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Rosemary, got it in one. It is a pudding. According to The Spouse, the original name was "Udder Twaddle", a reference to the twiddling motion made when milking a cow. It is a mixture of cream, molasses and currants, combined with stale bread and steamed. Not to everyone's taste but hey, there's no accounting for taste.

March 22, 2007 7:45 PM  
Blogger Pamelamama opined...

anyone who didn't hire you is a big stupid. I've been checking in to your blog every day to hear about it and I'm disappointed right along with you.

March 22, 2007 8:21 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Ah, it's ok, Pam. It really is. And I love your knitted buttons off for caring so much.

March 22, 2007 8:24 PM  
Blogger Dariush Alavi opined...

Oh no! I'm so sorry the job didn't work out... but I always think that if something hasn't happened then it just wasn't meant to happen... and as you say, maybe the main purpose of the experience was to help you crystallise your thoughts and feelings. But rejection (or perceived rejection) is always hard to take. Just leap into a vat of tiramisu...

As for wasting time, don't worry Lorraine, 'at home Mums' are NOT the only people who are good at that.

March 22, 2007 11:55 PM  
Blogger Grish opined...

Rejection sucks I've had my fill of it the last month or so. I am going to blame it on the economy and G.W.B.

March 23, 2007 3:52 AM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Mmmmm, tiramisu. And I suppose other people are equally good at wasting time but SAHMs (of older kids) have so much more of it to waste.

Oh Grish! Why didn't I think of that? Of course! And look at the parallels between the gig and what happened to those US attorneys...look close enough and I bet we find Al and Karl's sticky prints all over this. I feel soooo much better!

March 23, 2007 7:32 AM  
Blogger Grish opined...

Ooo I hadn't even considered a link between the Attorney's and myself, nice point. Well I hope the demon puppets are happy, now where's that petition...:-P

March 23, 2007 7:11 PM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...


March 23, 2007 7:20 PM  
Anonymous MHP :) opined...

As someone else said, we need to blame this one on Bush, too! EVERYTHING is Bush's fault!! :)

Lorraine, I'm so sorry to hear you didn't get the job--but another oportunity will come along that's twice as good!! :)

MHP :)

March 24, 2007 10:30 AM  
Blogger Lorraine opined...

Thanks, MHP. Stupid Bush.

March 24, 2007 12:43 PM  
Anonymous Kate opined...

Lorraine - here's to motivation. I have done web searches on some interesting orgainizations and am working on contacting them. Spring is here and the world looks bright - for all of us. But it is almost 9 am on the east coast and I have to start my work... no procrastinating! I will be in touch.

March 28, 2007 6:04 AM  

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