Friday, June 29, 2012

I Am Without Job

I’m on maternity leave.  It ends today.  When did I find out about losing my job?  Officially, yesterday.  Yup.  That’s right.  They day before my maternity leave ends, I find out I’ve lost my job.  Well, that’s not entirely true.  Tuesday is when my supervisor called me to come in on Thursday (yesterday) so we could “discuss” my job situation.  We talked for a minute and he basically said that they were “restructuring,” making cuts and one of those cuts would be me.

So, I will be actively looking for a job with no money coming in.  They did give me my severance and I have unused vacation time to be paid out.  So, it’s not like I’ll have no money, but once that’s gone, it’s done.  I better find a job before it runs out.  The longest you can be on Employment Insurance is one year.  That’s how long maternity leave is and EI is what pays that.  I don’t qualify for anymore because I haven’t worked in a year.

I’m not getting laid off because I was on maternity leave.  If I thought that, I would be way more angry and calling the Ministry of Labour.  I know that it’s a legitimate lay-off, one of many that they’re doing at the company.  Honestly, while it is extremely upsetting to be laid-off in general and specifically now, I don’t want to disparage the company I was working for.  I especially don’t want to say anything bad about the individuals I worked for and with.  I had some great supervisors.  I felt that they were unhappy about letting me go and having to let other people go too.

What is making me crazy is the fact that I won’t get any EI money.  I mean, I was on mat leave!  I wasn’t unemployed for a year.  I went on mat leave expecting to have a job when it was done.  If I knew they were going to lay me off, I would have looked for a new job, but I didn’t know.  According to them, they didn’t know either.  But it doesn’t matter, because the money maxes out at one year, no matter the circumstances.  Even though I expected to go back to work in just a handful of days, and now I’m not.  Now, I have to scramble to find something to pay the bills.  I know that there are rules, but my “good-bye letter” states the date of my termination as after the end of my Maternity leave.  Again, that doesn’t matter.

So if I’m stressed out, unable to concentrate on anything, this is why.  I finished my last book days ago, I had even started writing the review, but I haven’t been able to focus enough to finish it.  I haven’t read anything, watched a movie or really done anything fun.  I was writing a fair amount.  I was sending out queries.  It’s so hard to focus on trying to get published when all I can think about is that I’ll have no money soon.

I’m trying to be my normal self for the children, but I think they can tell something is wrong.  I’m just trying not to freak out.  I’m trying not to get overly emotional.  I’m trying to hold myself together and figure out what to do.  I know what to do, find a job ASAP!  Am I going to be able to?  I don’t know.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Making Story Changes

I'm making some serious changes to a short story that I've had puttering around for a few years.  I think it's better now.  Here's a quote from one of the new scenes I wrote.  (It probably needs editing.)

"I don't know what Gabrielle is doing.  She grabs my hand instead of a towel to clean my mess.  She turns it over.  It is red.  There is blood everywhere and I didn't notice.  It mixes with the wine, though the blood probably has enough wine in it already.  I didn't think I was that drunk.  Now that I see the gash, I start to feel the pain.  My hand burns and aches."

Image by Francesco Pappalardo via Wikimedia Commons.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

How Does This Sound?

This describes the short stories I've gathered (written) to make my [hopefully] first book.

"Whether it is physical violence (Another Day, Tired Lovers) or violent emotions (Withered Flowers, The Lie), the characters contained within Preoccupation With Violence have to deal with difficult circumstances, also known as life.  A man drives a car through a front window.  A woman comforts her grieving child.  A girl fights against an abusive parent.  A young woman contemplates ending her life.  Whether physical or emotional, the characters in Preoccupation With Violence are shaken.  They are stunned, punched, drunk and crying."


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I'm Trying It On

I've got a new look today.  A new background picture and a slightly different colour scheme.  I wanted a change, but I also liked the old look.  Any thoughts?

I have another background picture I want to try.  Maybe next week.  We'll see how this one feels.

Monday, June 11, 2012

What Do I Do?

I've been looking up how to best write a query letter for a short story collection. Most sites say don't. Really. I was able to find one site with a bit of advice, which is good. However, the adivice was short and not too specific. Basically, all the sites said collections don't sell. Apparently, the only way an agent or publisher will look at you is if you either also have a novel or you've been published somewhere with a lot of exposure, like The Atlantic or The New Yorker. Not very encouraging. I'm thinking of forging ahead... While working on a novel.