Things to do, other than sleep…

This post is going to focus on what I can do in the daytime, other than sleep.

I was cleaning out my desk the other day and found multiple pads where I’d begun to practice writing in nihongo (Japanese language).  I have so many Japanese learning resources now that it’s not even funny.  In addition to what I have, we just inherited a bunch, as well.  It would be worth it to work at this immediately after I wake up.  To start out with, I can practice my kana (syllabary), given that I’ve lost most of my katakana, and there are a few hiragana that I consistently confuse, misrecognize, or forget how to write.  (mu, anyone)

As I was thinking about this tonight, I was regretting not having gotten up at 5 AM for those two semesters in order to get to Japanese class, in college.  Maybe it felt like too big of a risk for me at the time…or I saw no future in it, as a mixed-race female queer nikkeijin.  Probably, both.  Plus — should I not use the Japanese, it will leave…and I was afraid that three years of training in nihongo would be like my six years in español, where I’ve forgotten — or was never taught — most of the language.  And then how much is the degree worth, if you forget what you learned?

Even as a writer in English language, though, it would have been of benefit to be able to read Japanese Literature.  Did I need all those long classes on English Lit and Creative Writing?  It’s hard to say.  I know that my critical thinking and analytical skills have very much been honed, in contrast to some of those around me, and I can write fairly easily now.  I can also detect bull much more easily now.  But I still don’t write to forms well (a reason why Screenwriting didn’t fit me), and I have yet to determine how I can use my writing ability in the working world…given that all signs pointed to “keep your day job” in University…and what that day job would be, I’m not sure, if I can’t use my degree towards it…

Unless, that is, all they want is to see a BA or BS and that you made it through Undergrad work.  I know that I could pull a Library Assistant position with this — but do I want to?  I could also be a Clerk, which would probably be a less intense job for me, if I could get out of the Public Library system.

In any case, I do remember — from my youth — my sibling saying that one of their video game magazines wouldn’t even consider hiring writers who did not have a degree in English.  I want to say that this was around the time I was 12, though I’m not sure.  I was young enough to think that it would have been a viable life option to work for Electronic Gaming Monthly Magazine…ah, kids’ dream jobs.

It would have been sweet to work as a pro video game reviewer, though, right?  I don’t think I was off the mark on that, but the difficulty lay in actually making any money other than with freelance work, and what is my “real” (or “steady”) job aside from said freelancing?  I know one person who writes for a video game review magazine, and it certainly does not pay all the bills — it’s more like extra money on the side.  On top of it, I have largely stopped playing video games because I see no gain in doing so.  Sure, it’s fun, but how have I advanced in my life or psyche once the game machine is off?

There is one other thing that I think can get me out of bed, and that’s reading books on making art — which is less intimidating than actually making art.  I have one which I just began, tonight, despite having had it out of the library for several weeks, now.  If it turns out to be as good as it seems, I may buy it.  (What I’ve seen so far focuses on mindset.)  There are actually two books in this category, which are probably good bets.

I’m thinking that if I’m going to sell my skills to an employer, the soft skills I will have trained for in Art (tenacity, self-starting [when I get that down, it would be great], attention to detail, abstract thought, attention to process, pattern recognition, etc.) would probably be worth more, monetarily, than the ability to make art — at least, at first.  Given that, though — the soft skills I’ve trained for at the Library (patience, attention to detail, discerning the nature of questions, toleration of stress, etc.) will probably be worth more than what I physically do — or did.

I don’t expect to get a job as an Illustrator in a year — I have way too much more ground to cover before I will become quite that good (at least, so I think — but maybe I’m doing myself a disservice, given that black and white painting I did last semester).  What will happen in the meantime between the Art AA and working in some way in relation to Art is probably going to be some type of Clerical work, because that’s all I can think of where I could use my Writing skills.  (But maybe I shouldn’t be overly focused on the writing?)

I’m also already mostly-a-Clerk at the library I work at.  I just need to get more secure in dealing with patrons (in the vein of “I won’t get upset today, because only I control when I get upset”), because if I become a Clerk in the library system, about half of my time (if not more) will be spent staffing Circulation.  Which, now that I think about it, in no way takes advantage of any of my inclinations, or skills that I actually want to use.  It’s an easy advancement, but it’s an advancement into a job that would at times be less than pleasant, and which — I’m learning — constantly has people attempting to cross my boundaries.

I have What Color is Your Parachute? 2013, and You Majored in What?, though I’m having trouble looking through the latter because of the electronic format, and the fact that it’s a workbook which builds on itself and its activities — and I keep stopping and restarting.

I still haven’t begun looking through job postings.  I probably should, just to get an idea of what’s out there.  Especially since I got help from the State this last time…this time, I can try and do some of my own research.

And then the last major thing that I can do:  exercise.  If nothing else, I need to tighten up my abs, though I also want to go walking and running.  I’m not sure this necessitates a special outfit, but given that I’m heavier than I used to be…it might be worth it to look for at least one jogging outfit.  I just hate to go out and buy more stuff when I have clothes that will work — they’ll just be uncomfortable.

We’ll see, tomorrow…


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Haru ("Codey") is a third-year Master's student in Library and Information Science, hoping to find a way to fuse their desire to make the world a better place and to finance their art.

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