The Year of Now

At my deskNow is the time to write.

I’ve dreamed of living a life of reading, learning, and writing since I was a young girl, and this is the year that my dream becomes a reality. Although my jobs over the past 40+ years often allowed me to make use of my writing and research skills, I’ve struggled to make time outside of the workday for creating my own poems, essays, and stories.

I did the getting-up-at-5 am thing, and the hustling-to-complete -a-manuscript-during-academic-breaks marathons, and the-writing-at-night-until-your-eyes-close, all of which were fruitful, but exhausting. I knew, all along, that the only way to have enough time for writing everything I wanted to write was to make it my full-time vocation, and that’s the destination I’ve been working and saving toward all my life.

I mention the working and saving part because I don’t want to give the impression that I’m some daring iconoclast. I’m a sixty-year-old woman with two chronic medical conditions, and I worry about health insurance as much as the next person. But 2018 is the year I stop living in fear, the year I stop trading what could be my writing time for the security of a full-time job working for someone else, the year of now.

Resigning from my position with the Women’s Economic Stability Initiative at Santa Fe College has been a difficult decision, and not just because I’m letting go of the paycheck and benefits. My co-workers there are now friends — some of the kindest, bravest women I know. In helping program participants to achieve their career dreams, I felt good about being one of many people working to change the economic inequities that exist in our community. And, I learned a lot about employment trends and the challenges faced by older workers.

It’s not the first time I’ve jumped into an entrepreneurial role, but my jumping skills are a bit rusty. In 1982, at the age of 23, I started a law practice in the Boston area and financed it at first by part-time bartending. After fifteen years and two more graduate degrees, I left the practice to devote myself to teaching writing and critical thinking skills to college students here in Florida, out West, up North, and in Japan.

As a freelancer, I’ll continue to write memoir, poetry, and researched political articles, but I’ll also be offering concise, accurate, audience-centered content to nonprofits and businesses. Wish me luck! And affordable health care for all!




6 thoughts on “The Year of Now

  1. My gosh, Michele I’m qvelling! I’m so proud of my brilliant friend with guts! I’m terrified of this joke called health care as much as you are for other concerns, but you have to do what’s in your ❤️ heart.. your passion…. you will succeed !probably beyond your dreams .. it’s in the cards..


  2. From the not-so-frozen wastes of Idaho, congratulations on having the strength to make the leap! It takes guts to pursue what you love, and I wish you good fortune. As someone who is (slowly) trying to get back to that life himself, I applaud you seizing your passion, and look forward to reading your future chronicles.


  3. I want to do something similar, but I am not there yet. My husband fell out of the dream…
    Master of Policy and had hopes of doing more. I hate the winter and Im in Indiana. Think the area is grand…go for it!


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