Divergent Lives

Posted by – April 22, 2008

My lives have diverged, some days in ways I can’t even measure.

Recently, at my 20th HS reunion, people wanted to know if they should call me Helen. Worse yet, I met up with an old friend who was in town for Comic Con and he wanted to know what to introduce me as.

But the worst is when it comes to work: on the one hand I’m a published author who has lectured at quite a lot of U.S. colleges and universities, who was recently nominated as one of the Top Ten female bloggers, and who has teaching experience at the college level.

On the other hand, I’m a freelance admin and bookkeeper who has also tutored and edited for the past couple of years.

When I look at my one resume (my author CV, to be accurate), I’m convinced the the temp people are going to want to know why on earth I need a temp job. But the other looks a little thin for someone who is approaching 40, & really looks like I haven’t been doing much for the past couple of years, which I haven’t, because I’ve been busy promoting a book and teaching, of course.

It’s a funny life. But I still need a job.

7 Comments on Divergent Lives

  1. Jude says:

    In some ways, that multiple identity thing has stayed with me – I’ll be up to my elbows in electrical conductors the size of my thumb one day, writing spreadsheet macros and HTML another, and tending the office at the yoga studio on a third day. (sometimes it changes hour by hour). People ask “whaddya do?” and it’s hard to answer, it’s really complicated.

    At least I’ve got it down to one name and identity :)

    On the one hand, it’s never boring, and I’m always busy. On the other hand, I can’t help but feel that by spreading myself so thinly, and not really focusing on any one thing with a single-minded passion, I’m not really doing anything all that well.

  2. Catrina says:

    Helen:
    It is still not too late. I recommend you go for your Ph.D. If you go into academia full time, it will provide a foundation, a “base of operations” for you to then branch out into your other endeavors.

    Academia enhances your publishing and vice versa. It also enhances your blogging by giving it academic credence as well as “informal” attributes it now has. It provides credence to a media career as well which is really the career track you have developed while working to promote MhB and SiNtMIM…. Publishing promotion and media are very similar career tracks…..

    Academia also provides a lot of “down time” to pursue your other interests. One only works nine months out of the year but receives benefits 12 months. (health insurance, etc.)

    Just food for thought.

    Catrina

  3. marci says:

    Here’s an idea. Tranny Chick Lit. Could put you on easy street.

  4. Donna says:

    Yeah, right. All you have to do is write a crappy bestseller in a pink cover, all about a nice girl from the Upper East Side who works in, say, publishing, and finds true love with a crossdresser. Judging from the books like that I’ve seen in bookstores, I bet you could write one in a week. But you’d have to invent a new nom de plume to preserve your reputation!

  5. marci says:

    There’s no such thing as a “crappy” bestseller. They sell best because they’re good. Are they fine literature? No. Should people only read fine literature? I hope not. So let’s put that to rest. As for the plot? The tranny is the protagonist, the one on the cover, the one in Manolos and Burberry scarves, looking for love in all the wrong places, whose witty girlfriend shares the sorrows and laughs, the one-too-many cocktails and coming home at 3am without your favorite yellow LaPerla panties on—the ones with the pretty scallops around the edges that looked sooooo good on Scarlett Johansen in last May’s issue of W. There, something like that.

  6. helenboyd says:

    You guys are funny. Find me a publisher that’s interested, & I’ll write your tranny chick lit.

    Jude: yes, I know you’re like me in that. It’s a blessing and a curse, but mostly it buys me my freedom (along with the freedom to starve, as they say).

    Catrina: what I want to do is write novels and teach right now, which I’m perfectly qualified to do with two published books. The problem is making a living, And while I expect at some point I will go get a PhD, that time is not now, I don’t think.

  7. Catrina says:

    Just thinking about your (and Betty’s) best interests hon…. :) (I am older and you and Betty are like daughters.)

    You are a “great” writer, especially when you dig into your own thoughts and feelings. Then, your writing is utterly superb. So if you write a novel based on your own inner paradigm, I am sure your novel will emerge successful and be published with excellent results.

    So what would that inner paradigm be? :)

    Might be a good place to start when pondering plot, texture, environment etc.

    BTW: Some of your hints at your high school days are intriguing. A gen X book on high school days, some gender bending from Betty’s perspective, something about the conflict with the “perfect girls” might hit home especially because your gen is at or around the 20th reunion (significant for reminiscing.) The demographic might also expand beyond the feminist – transgender community to a more “generic” audience. More generic the audience, more $$$$.

    Would be a fun read too… especially considering your alliterative excellence.

    Catrina

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