Work is over… time to get to work! by Deb Katie

(Please forgive my mini-post… I am in New York for the Webby Awards, at a silly hotel with somewhat spotty internet access.)

Well, this is a very appropriate time for me to write my “school’s out” post, because I’ve just completed work on my last Animal Planet Dog Championships show. That’s right, after five years of producing and writing the dog show, it’s all done. (There’s still the big National Championship in December, but no more “regular season” shows.)

This means that, for the time being, I’m (EEP!) a full-time writer.

Exciting, yes! But also totally scary. Because now I have no excuse not to write on a full-time basis. With a day job gumming up the works, you get to feel virtuous for fitting in a couple of hours a day (and if you’re VERY good, you eat at your desk and write through lunch). But now… I have nowhere to hide!

When I first got out of college and started what would become a series of jobs–some good, some not-so-good, but all very educational–I never dreamed that there would be a day when I’d be able to just call myself a writer. My job title on the dog show–“writer/producer”–was close, and a total thrill unto itself, but now I don’t have “producer” to fall back on.

…What do I do? I’m a writer.

Wow, that’s a little surreal! But I’m willing to give it a try.

I think my biggest challenges are going to be time management and attention span management. So if anyone has any tips on those topics, I would just love to read about them in the comments.

Happy Tuesday!

~ Katie Alender

PS – Last Friday, I got to meet my sister Debutante Meredith Cole in person! Here we are at Zampa in NYC’s (very trendy, silly-hotel-containing) Meatpacking District.

Katie Alender and Meredith Cole

7 Replies to “Work is over… time to get to work! by Deb Katie”

  1. Hey Katie-

    I feel your pain/angst/excitement. When I started writing “full-time” almost three years ago, I wasn’t sure how (or if) I could do it. It took awhile to get in the rhythm of things–but I’m happy to say it’s all working out now. A couple things that worked for me–writing in my calendar “write”, setting a word goal every day . . . and not letting myself do anything (except for going to the gym first thing in the morning) until that goal is met (no lunch with friends, no grocery store, no laundry, no nothing. I was at work!),and training family and friends (and myself) that I was working even though I was home.

    It didn’t happen overnight, but it’s great now. Also, remember what a gift it is to be able to write FULL-TIME.

  2. Congrats on your new WRITER status! It is scary, but I’m sure it’ll be a huge success. It was so wonderful to meet you in New York last week–hope the Webbys were lots of fun.

  3. I second what Judy writes. I still have a “day job” in a sense as a mom, and while my kids are at school/sitter, and knowing they are coming back soon, that helps light a serious fire under me to get busy.

    But as I’ve blogged about before, you have to be your own mean boss and do put “write” in your planner and word count goals (for me it’s a weekly goal more often than not as days can be unpredictable).

  4. TIME MANAGMENT???!!! Is there really such a thing??? I once (well more then once) heard, any job/task will take as much time as you have (to the deadline). In other words…chance are you will be tweaking or working on a project until you HAVE to hand it in, even if you are given 3 months to do it. Then there is always…”I work best under pressure!!!” Which begs the question…”ummm, have you ever tried to work NOT under pressure?” Is there such a moment in your life???

    I know, if I don’t have an office to go to at such and such a time, I will do nothing constructive for much of the day, week, month, year or so it seems, that is why I am so proud of Eve for actully being able to finish her book (and then some) without having a boss to please, or a paycheck every week to look forward to. And that goes for all of you too.

  5. Since you’ve become a pro at multi-tasking, Katie, I have every confidence it won’t take you long to adapt to this new position. Congratulations on the achievement!

  6. Fantastic, Katie!

    I am self-employed, and I second, or third, Judy’s point about training family and friends. If you stay disciplined, all should be well.

    Congratulations, and good luck!

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