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Posts Tagged ‘law firm’

I made it to 1:11 PM today without any caffeine. This is a feat of epic proportions. And, all by itself, it might be worthy of a blog post. But since you were probably anticipating something with a bit more substance, I shall try to add words to this post. The caffeine hasn’t sunk in yet. Bear with me.

I’m officially caught up at my desk at the law firm. I’ve dabbled around editing the first three chapters of Rise of the Dark Sprite. And ideas for future books are nibbling at the corners of my consciousness, taunting me with their sweetness while giving no hint as to their substance. All in all, I feel–just a hint–more like myself. Although, that could have something to do with the love recently given by my niece.

Baby Evelyn held onto her mother’s hands today and walked with great determination and sweetness towards me. Sister Kate and I both watched in amazement at her new prowess. And it made this aunt feel very loved.

As for this moment… a little introvert time. Josh Garrels, Starbucks’ coffee (yay!), and writing. Yes. I’m in for a good couple of hours.

Blog Bonus Feature: My health hasn’t weathered all the travel of the last few weeks very well, but I’ve decided to embrace whatever this summer season brings. The adventure will be worth the exhaustion. My advice to you: Stop and smell the roses. Even if they make you sneeze.

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On any given day, I wake up sometime after 7:00, head to my parents’ law firm by 8:30, and work until 10:30 for them. Then my mom and switch positions. I become her boss and she my employee. For several hours we do our best to work on Rebirth Publishing and the editing of Mark of Orion. The hope is to leave my afternoons free for concentrated, independent editing/publishing work. And since, on Lyme treatment, I have about six useable hours of energy a day, this provides me with a very limited window for my work. That means we need to be focused, right?

Only, without fail, about halfway through the editing, I start to stammer. My dyslexia has me blurring words together. I am hopelessly unable to concentrate and my tension level begins to grow. What is this mysterious phenomena that plagues me? Hunger.

It’s funny how busy-life and consuming-editing can make you forget even the most basic things–like eating. So, my fellow writers, if you are hitting block one day or finding that your nerves are getting raw or that your creativity is stifling, may I make a suggestion? Check yourself to see if you have done basic things like: eating, drinking, showering, drinking coffee, and having conversations with non-fictional people. Keeping yourself in shape is the best way to keep your writing in shape.

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You have heard me say before that I love business. I lose my days and nights dreaming up almost as many publishing ideas as I do writing plot-lines. I spend just as much time editing those business concepts as I do my novels. Weekly, I find myself locked in as many random conversations with my family about business as about writing. In college, I ate up  my business classes (minus the accounting classes, but–come on–those are just never going to be fun!). In five years of real-world publishing/Presidential experience and a practical internship from birth at my parent’s law firm, I have learned a lot about what I don’t know.

So despite the fact that I have broken even in an industry where, on average, ‘self-publishers’ sell around sixty copies in their lifetimes, I am well ware that I still have a lot to learn. I have yet to grow into my full business-self. And that is what this year between college and ‘whatever’ was specifically designed for. Although I have epic talents as a multitasker, almost as quickly as I started publishing I realized that college would have to be finished before I could wholeheartedly apply myself to business. So, while still in high school, I applied myself to my college, graduating a-year-and-a-half before my time. Since my completion of a Bachelor’s Degree in February, I have put myself into rigorous examination of who I am, where I am strong, where I am weak, and where I and my company are going. I have learned a lot.

For example, I now know that I am a brilliant innovator-visionary. Few are better at dreaming up ideas and getting them rolling. The problem is that–so far–I have not been much of an innovator-leader. The reason probably rests with the fact that I have not had the energy to ask people to follow along. Or the time-resources to guide them. But, if my financial and ministry goals are to be met, that has to change. So I’m taking myself back to school. Not to Husson or Nyack or Columbia (like in the past), but to the library and the Internet and dialogue with professionals and everything in-between. After a lengthy editing session for Mark Of Orion, I grabbed my newest finds at the library and headed to my happy place (Starbucks). Though I probably should be practicing for my solo-concert at a fundraising picnic this Saturday, instead I find myself pouring over Great By Choice by Jim Collins and Morten T. Hansen. And I’m charged by what I am reading. So be prepared, blog-readers, for some business-oriented posts. I am sorry in advance.

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I must say that I enjoyed the rain less today. Like most artists, piles of money are not my reward for the labor of love that is writing. On Wednesdays I work at my parents’ law firm to earn some extra cash. And beginning at the bottom of the Totem Pole means more often than not I’m the errand runner. Thankfully the drizzle of rain didn’t last. While my hair might have suffered for the wetness, no great harm was done to the rest of me.

It was midday when the writing bug struck. Despite how much I enjoy working here all I wanted was to curl up in front of the Starbucks fireplace with some coffee and my laptop. Nevertheless, I persevered to the end of my shift by which point–according to the laws of the universe–I had lost every last inch of creativity inside my frame. C’est la vie.

At least I leave work today feeling productive. I moved piles of paperwork from the desk I share with my elder brother. There is something refreshing about putting your mind to task, completing it, moving onto the next task, completing it, and repeating. Perhaps the very continuity of the labor will inspire me to write tomorrow…

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Since my entire staff is related to me we don’t really bother with business meetings. We talk out the ideas together around the dinner table and put them into practice the same way. Today we broke the norm.

You see, in my first semester at college (so I would have been a sophomore) I knew I could not spend forever in school. It was slowing down my business too much. Then I chose Nyack because I would graduate early through them. We recognized going in that I would have to put a lot of focus on school and not as much on publishing. If there was one publishing area I could emphasize it would have to be the speaking. And we have followed that plan.

But it leaves writing and other publishing duties to fall behind. I was feeling overwhelmed and needed to make sure that I was still heading in the right direction. Reevaluation is important. So after I spoke to Penobscot Christian School’s chapel this morning I got a Dunkin Donuts coffee and went to my parents’ law firm. I sat across from my mother and examined the little and big parts of our business. I asked her council, explained where we were, and came out feeling reassured. The plan is right on track. Sweet!

The variables we have encountered we could not have anticipated, but things seem to be going well in Rebirth Publishing. The sun is shining. I got to have lunch with my beautiful family. I spoke; had coffee; drove with the window down. What a day!

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