O Frabjous Day!

I would even go so far as to say Callooh, callay.

Last Friday my boss called me in for a meeting with my supervisor. (No, that isn’t the good bit. Be patient!) Having waved a long list at me of what I currently do, and a shorter list of what else they’d like me to start doing, they said that all this really came to more than four days a week, and that they would like me to go back to five days. (Definitely not the good bit.)

Can you guess what I said in reply? If you can’t, go back and have a look at the last quote post. It was like that, except my boss didn’t offer me a pay rise. I handed in my official resignation letter the next working day.
I am leaving the Dreaded Day Job! My Jabberwock is slain!


In the end, after all my dream-drafts, it didn’t actually matter whether or not I crafted the perfect resignation letter. I had other things also on my mind that weekend and the main thing was that it was done. Like organising a wedding: the main thing is that you end up married to the person you love; everything else is just icing.

Being absurdly happy at giving notice, I was prepared to be generous, and have agreed to stay on til the end of February, doing five day weeks while they train a new person. This means a notice period of seven weeks instead of the usual four, but hey, I bask in a mellow glow. Peace on earth, goodwill to all mankind etc etc.

But, I hear you ask (all right, I don’t, but indulge me here) what are you going to do now? Man does not live on bread alone, but it certainly helps! What new job have you acquired, and are you quite certain you aren’t going from the frying pan to the fire? Better the devil you know etc etc.

I thank you for your kind concern, but let me allay your fears at once. Thanks to the machinations of the Caped Gooseberry’s fruitful brain, I shall from March be taking up a full-time position as a SAHW – a stay-at-home writer.

My dream has come true.

I feel like Mary Theotokos:
“My heart overflows with my Lord’s praises,
my soul with joy because of God my Saviour
for he has not forgotten me, his servant.
Everyone will call me blessed and happy
because of what the Mighty God has done for me
– holy is His name!”

In fact, my only difficulty now is to avoid looking too happy at work – since my boss has asked me not to tell my colleagues yet, questions might well be asked which it would be difficult to answer honestly.

Happy, fortunate, lucky, blessed – oh, yes. That’s me.

Mid-Week Quote: Resignation

When he resigned his boss thought he was asking for more money. ‘No,’ he said. ‘I’m just going to try to be a full-time writer.’ Oh, his boss said, you want a lot more money. ‘No, really,’ he said. ‘This isn’t a negotiation. I’m just giving you my thirty days’ notice. Thirty-one days from now, I won’t be coming in.’ Hmm, his boss replied. I don’t think we can give you as much money as that.

Joseph Anton: A Memoir
Salman Rushdie

December: A Sense of Faith

Confession time: I didn’t think when this year began that I’d be able to withstand another year in the Dreaded Day Job. I cried, I begged, I pleaded, I fasted and prayed – and I stayed stuck. It was like fighting with the Tar-Baby – the more I fought the stucker I got (and like the Tar-Baby, He say nuthin’).

Twelve months on, and I’m still at the DDJ, and none of the myriad resignation letters I have composed in thought have yet been set to paper. (A question for any employment lawyers out there: what’s the legal status of an employee who sends in several different resignation letters in one envelope?) But the year has not been wasted.

Resignation Letter

During the year I have worked through Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way.  (Although I did miss some exercises due to a bout of zombieism bronchitis and I did get a couple of months behind at one point.) This has involved fun things like starting a scrapbook, playing with bubbles and making a jester’s hat. Less enjoyably, there was the dire Week Without Reading. Never Again.

While I haven’t been exactly religious in my observance of the ‘basic tools’ of the Artist’s Way – morning pages and Artist’s Dates – I have used them, and found them useful. One of the best things about the Artist’s Way is that it’s adaptable – not everyone has to do it the same way. It’s alter-to-fit, not One Size Fits All (which it never does).


The exercises for Chapter 12 include restorative and expansive tasks like mending something (in my case a summer dress that I can now wear after 18 months in the mending pile) or repotting a plant. I have brought home Bob the Parlour Palm (named after my favourite Simpsons character) and am on the lookout for a larger pot for him.

In the meantime I shall remove the freesia bulbs which ended up in the same pot (long story) and give them a taste of the fridge. For some reason they sprout in autumn, bloom in winter and die off in spring. Are they hemispherically confused?
I dare to dream that bringing Bob home from the DDJ is just the beginning of the longed-for ritual of Cleaning Out The Desk.


I am becoming unstuck. (Not in the two-sandwiches-short-of-a-picnic way. I think.) I wouldn’t say that the Artist’s Way is the key to creative freedom and the solution to all your problems, but it’s helped me push the boundaries of what I thought possible in my life – and to my delight, some of the boundaries give. (Although they do need to be pushed pretty hard…)

I am glad I did the Artist’s Way, and perhaps someday I shall do it again. But for now, I’m going to look back with gladness – and look forward with hope.