Right now I sit in my house and it is silent. A silence, that some have described as the deep breath before the plunge. Well maybe it’s not that dramatic, but I am definitely standing at the beginning of the unknown. In other words I have decided to become a full time writer. My family and I are making the big move to New Jersey and with that move I will leave the corporate world behind and write picture books; an exciting and yet scary notion.
My wife is from New Jersey and has always wanted to move back home and I am cool with that. But I never thought I would make the move and not try to find another position in the field of science. So this is a big deal for me. My writing career has hit a point that if I try to keep it part time with a new job, it could wither and die. It’s one thing when you’ve worked for a company for 22 years and have 5 weeks of vacation. Book signings, school visits and conferences, were liberties that I could take. It’s a whole other thing to try that at a new company with 2 weeks of vacation at best. I have three more books coming out next year, with two more each year after that through at least 2017. Plus expanding Monster into board books and possible online content. I had to make a decision.
Though, as I pack the house I can’t help but think, am I making the right the decision? Can I truly make this a career? What if I fail, can I go back into the science field? Is it okay to pack glassware with towels and underwear? The answers to all these questions elude me, but it doesn’t mean I shouldn’t try. How else will I learn? Maybe it’s the scientist in me saying, “you can theorize all day but unless you run an experiment you know nothing.”
Easy to say, hard to do.
My science career is safe, I’ve done it for longer than I’ve been in school. But recently it’s lost its passion. It became laborious, with paper work, meaningless meetings and corporate acronyms. The pure science disappeared and so did my love for it.
I recently heard a quote from Jim Carey that pretty much summed it up for me. He said, “You can fail at the things you don’t like, so you might as well do the thing you love.”
I love writing picture books. It’s possible I will break a glass or two during this experiment but at least I will have the answer.
Now it’s time I took that breath.