Thursday, December 15, 2011

Random Thoughts during OT

In Melanie's world, there are piles and piles of books. And Starbucks. And giant pillow chairs for sitting......

I've made myself a career as an editor. I correct other people's writing. I can accept that I haven't written my great American novel yet, because I've been too busy correcting other people's writing and earning a semi-decent wage in the process. And lack o' lithium makes me scatty and easily distracted by the shiny. And because my great American novel is still trapped on a 3½ inch floppy. And it needed a serious edit 5 years ago.

Just one thing....can we do anything about how incredibly f**king boring it is?!

My job, not the novel....novel's quite witty actually...if I can ever get it off the f**king disc!

Admittedly, my sitch is a little unique. I work for the Henry Ford of website companies. We crank out semi-decent, mostly templated masterpieces by the truckload that small to medium sized businesses snatch up for around $100 a month, because it turns out this Internet thing isn't going away, and some salesperson told them there's a chance their profits could increase by utilizing this perplexing tool.

It is perplexing to lots of small businesses out there still...the number of sites we get, with notes like: "customer does not receive email" or "customer does not own computer" boggles the mind. How the frick do you own a business nowadays without a computer? We talking paper book ledgers here or just a serious aversion to receiving spam, viruses, and chain letters? I may cringe at how technology has taken over our daily lives, but I also freely admit to loving my Kindle, my Internet trolling abilities, and my nifty new cell phone, which isn't even "smart," (thank goodness) but does have a full keyboard for texting now. Yes, Husby and I have joined the texting craze. It's rather pukeworthy in its adorableness. How 2 people can be married for (...6, 7, 8...) 12 years and still render each other squishy with little love notes isn't something I ever want to question. But I digress...

I like to think editing would be different for a news source or a book or magazine publishing company. The stories would be ever-changing, if more depressing occasionally, and there'd be more of a feeling of having my finger on the pulse of our society. Or something.

But this "production environment" is for the birds. We crank out sites by the 100s these days. Yes, it results in a nice quarterly EBITDA; handsome, if pedestrian sites; and I certainly don't disdain my daily wage, the copious OT I've been getting lately, or the holiday bonus that I pray they're bestowing on we worthy (and weary) souls tomorrow...

But it's boring as dog snot most days, and the inability of the copywriters and designers to grasp their jobs makes us editors want to lay our heads on our desks most days, if only to keep from launching our monitors across the office in frustration.

They've also hired so many of us now (copywriters, designers, and editors) that we're sitting too close to the Copy/Design section, and eventually those poor souls (poor, not just for their inadequate writing and design skills, but for the fact that they make less than I do, and I can't imagine living on less than what I make) are going to hear us bitching about their substandard work, and the animosity will build between the teams again, making constructive feedback impossible. And then management will scratch their heads, not move any of us, and demand that we fix it amongst ourselves. Asshats.

I celebrated 12 years with the company this month. I'm just blowing off steam here....I'm on OT and a little brain-tired. In spite of my bitching, I'm immensely grateful for the experience I've gained at the .com and hope I can continue working with them, even if we move out of state. Economy doesn't play a role in my gratitude for employment (yea, OK, that's bullshit, no one's indispensible and unless you're the 1%, you're scared of the state of the economy right now). What I mean is we have a brilliant CEO at the wheel and he's surrounded himself with the right people. We've managed to grow exponentially in the last 5 years, when plenty of other website companies were passing away in the wake of Republican economic policies. That's nothing to sneeze at. It's a good place to work, albeit with the same frustrations you'll find at any office environment. I ain't that special.

But I am a good editor. And that knowledge has helped me recently, helped me let up on myself for not publishing before I was 30....or, ehem, 40 for that matter. I can't measure myself against those I admire who have managed it, to publish amidst careers, farms, small people, dreams (like Jenna, Ashley, you guys!). They have brains that produce lithium, as far as I can tell. I don't know when I'll be fully medicated again, but I do know that my reasoning for not being fully medicated right now is sound, and wrapped in far too much hope and prayer to sway from, until we are certain that all natural or scientific methods have been exhausted. Man, I'm digressing tonight...just shifted to babymaking, if you didn't catch that.

So I accept my scattered personality. That ain't easy, when you were raised by a perfectionist, but by the time you're my age, you also have to stop blaming personality quirks on your parents. I've been out in the world plenty, plus parents that die before their time in my eyes get an instant pass on the bullshit they passed onto you. It's only fair. Didn't put him on a pedestal, actually; just brought things into perspective. Shitty way to learn a life lesson though...if there is a god, she and I are going to have a serious chat when the time comes.

If you stuck it out through this post, you're a true friend and I appreciate the support. My addled psyche needs a release occasionally, and y'all know I'm just journaling here. I won't cure cancer with this blog, or win bloggy awards for my insight. But I enjoy the heck out of giving you, my loyal 6½ readers, glimpses into Melanie's world...reminds me I can still write, when it feels like the only writing I do lately is correcting grammar and punctuation on yet-another frickin' auto repair or construction site.

Images from,, and respectively. Links stopped working for some reason...must be telling me my post is too long ; )

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