Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Day Job

So you might have been saying to yourself, "Where's that Alan Ryker been? I haven't noticed his DYNAMIC presence on the various social networks, and I feel the loss."

Well, I've got a new/old day job. Some of you might know that I got laid off from my job awhile back and rode out my unemployment. I've been looking for work, and it's been pretty damn depressing. There's not a lot to do when you have no skills and also refuse to work with other people (ie I won't talk to customers, or management, or engineers, or anyone on the other end of a phone), especially in the current economic environment.

What sucked is that, because my fiction publishing is not yet self-supporting, it felt very silly to keep writing on things I couldn't afford to put out.

But I'm working again.

I mentioned awhile back that I'm kind of a fitness dude, that I was a certified personal trainer for a bit and that that (plus my previous copy writing experience) qualified me to write for Lance Armstrong's fitness mega-site I stopped writing for them because they ran out of things to write about. They get their content from Demand Media, and the way that Demand Media works is that they offer up a bunch of computer-generated headlines based on search engine BS and you claim the headline and write an article based off of it and a standardized article type (list, how to, topic view, blah blah).

So for awhile they had all the content they wanted and I got a normal job. They buy tons of articles and then release them in a trickle. I've checked with them occasionally and the situation hasn't really changed.

Until now... (OMGSODRAMATIC!)

Anyway, now they've got a bunch of articles to write. It's not the most creative or in-depth fitness writing. Like I said, they provide the topics. But it's basically what I like to do and basically about things I'm interested in, and for copywriting, the pay is good. Plus, no commute (KC is frickinfrackin huge and I HATE driving), no gas for the enormous vehicle I drive, totally open schedule, no boss. Freelancing is kind of awesome if you can hack it.

Of course, as with almost everything, there are drawbacks. There are only so many words I can write in a day, and the name of the game with them is volume. I've spent the last week getting accustomed to my new workload, and have barely written any fiction. But I made a major production breakthrough yesterday, and I'm very positive about my output going forward.

And soon I'll be able to afford to put out the paper edition of Psychomancer, and as I finish the 4 books I'm working on I'll actually be able to publish them. Imagine that!

Here's a photo of my work setup:

I use my laptop with an extra monitor. On one I keep my browser with research and whatnot, and on the other my word processing stuff. I was writing exercise articles this morning, so I've got my exercise books spread out and easily accessible. Pretty sweet.

So I may not be on the twitter and the fb and the boards as much, but I think I'm back on top of this blogging and fiction writing thing!


  1. And now the void is filled . . . whew!

  2. Someone with a less healthy self-esteem might think you were being a tad sarcastic.


  3. Good for you honey - and good luck with it all! xx

  4. I've been without work for several months, too, Alan. I know a thing or two about trying to get a job in KC, too. Definitely isn't easy. It's encouraging to see someone else finally regain control of his life! Good luck with the new gig.

  5. Goodwife - Thanks a lot!

    Mr. Hesler - I didn't even notice you were from the KC area! It's rough out there. Good luck to you too, dude.