My Sunday Hello from NYC,
Now that my landing gear is fully extended, use of Google Maps almost non existent, timing of subway departures in sync, a symphony of sirens, horns, and the steel hum from the underground tunnels along with the conglomeration of street performers a beautiful melody, views of the skyline still breathtaking, I am a little restless and struck with bouts of missing my family this week. Maybe it’s just a sampling of the winter blues coming to an end? Whereas, I have to say, it has been an interesting week here in NYC. With inklings of spring and then a blast of snow and back into inklings of spring. My height of joy this week came from celebratory news from a friend, long and overdue in our worldly timing of things, although well deserving, to the lows from a change in plans(long overdue as well), to a fun-filled weekend with an afternoon in meeting and hearing talented authors and artists present their new books at my favorite bookstore, Books of Wonder!
When you feel like you’ve conquered Mt. Everest(being my move to NYC), you just want to sit at the top and enjoy it for awhile but No, not me! These breathers, the in-between times, are hard when you feel like you just made the first few laps around the race track and you are in the lead…you want to keep going, right? I guess I’m trying to be patient, because I can feel the creative energy pulsating, inner excitement rumbling in my tumblings, as I wait for more fun changes to come. It’s gradually starting. Today, I came across a couple of books to read for research so to say, for my own stories, mixed in with some of the picture books I was searching for at the library. Odd, yet I know differently. Odd things excite me and there are no accidents! Furthermore, I keep hearing my inner voice having conversations with me about my writing, thoughts about things to write, streaming in spurts like a pulsating water sprinkler. Usually when I’m NOT at home to write! It looks like my stories are going to be placed on the front burner again now that I am gliding into spring and feeling at home. Yeah!
A question asked a lot is about my job or what kind of work am I doing. I’m dying to tell a little here in a bit, however, I wanted to share one of my opportunities that got the ball rolling for New York, and it started with a call.
The call was like preparing for a final exam or better yet an entrance exam into the illustrious domain of children’s publishing (in which I created a fantasized world of working in), as I propped my laptop up upon several books, just the right height so that my aging lines on my face appeared diminished, turning on my Skype. I was so nervous preparing for the interview and had a hard time taming down my anxiety over the 24 hours prior to it, and especially that very same morning having to be at work at 6am, preparing for an ad set. I wore myself out. My computer screen lit up with an incoming call, as the president of the literary agency came into view.
We chatted more in a conversational flow with moments of intellectual adherence to the purpose of the call, ending with an exchange of a definite interest in having me on board. I was given a few writing assignments over the next couple of days that ended with a hitch, an invitation…could I come in and meet with her in person? She needed someone to start right away and I was in Phoenix. I knew then that if what opportunities that I thought I really wanted was in NYC, then I needed to be in NYC. A week later, I voiced, “I’m going to New York.” And a little over two weeks after that, I was on my way.
An agonizing two months had gone by leading up to this Skype interview. I was grasping at straws, hoping to not pick the short one, while teetering between Phoenix, Boston, Chicago, and New York, prepared to go where the opportunity would take me. That would make sense, right? Offers started coming in from Boston working for Follet (an educational product company), no more than an entry level position, in their bookstores. I really desired to have a job offer, that would be my deciding factor on where I ended up. Nonetheless, just as I am writing to you, almost in a backwards story telling fashion, my life seems to go. No! Move first, Jane. Then secure a job is how I played this one out…IKES! Maybe I did originally pick the short straw!
The groove of the magnetic pull towards NYC, clicked into place shortly after that Skype call and had me linked in at the tail end with great centrifugal force, like in that crazy game, Crack the Whip. Little did I know what I was looking for and the direction I intended to go, that the centrifugal force would veer me off into something totally different.
Yes, I have a job, one that I would not consider earning money for. I only work four days out of the week, with three day weekends, and here in NYC you get paid every week. My weekly pay is enough to where I can nearly make my month’s rent by the end of the first week. Not too shabby, plus I get to visit bookstores, go shopping, read lots of picture books, attend events at the library, made an appearance on TV, create and paint artwork, make little fun snacks, do research and work on my writing, catch a few good shows, pet chickens, learn french, mingle with teachers and administrators, sing to my hearts content, get smothered in hugs, discover what makes children's hearts sing, plan and go on trips around the city including riding the Roosevelt Island Ariel Tram and play! This job feeds nicely into my career as a writer where I am filled to the brim with love and inspiration while being captivated inside a child’s world. Yes, many wonderful perks along with paid holidays, and a monthly metro card that keeps me hopping from place to place whenever I just want to pick up and go. I do love my job and it keeps me busy for now as I kick my own butt into gear with my writing.
As for Miss Penelope, she is probably tired of hibernating or calloused from laying around or delirious from bouts of cabin fever by now, barking at the bit to go on more adventures, anything except having me read stories to her. Reading, “The Biggest Kiss” to her had me in stitches! She knows the word kiss and just when she thought I was done bothering her, I would say kiss. She eventually bailed out on me and went under the bed. She thinks I’m nuts!
We, meaning she and I, interviewed a dog walker yesterday, that came to meet Miss Peeps. It was a mutual attraction and possibly a good combination indeed why momma’s away, to keep her happily content and empty bladder free until I get home. We have this ritual of going to the local pet shop a block away every Friday, after I make it home. She nearly drags me for a whole two stores as she prances right on up and into the doorway. It’s a good thing she is on a leash or she may be sitting there a while before I can catch up to her! We mosey into the store, chatting away with our friend, and it’s not before too long, Miss Penelope has her bully stick picked out and away we go, with an extra in hand for the week.
I will never forget the days when I first arrived here, staring out the windows into the city, stunned each time, realizing I’m in New York. Who would of thunk that my Goodyear, Arizona job would of led me to their largest store in the nation, three floors to boot with a walkie talkie in hand, falling in love with the people just as much as I am with the city.
Big hugs and doggy “Kiss”es from,
Jane and Penelope
Jane and Penelope