Friday, July 2, 2010

Things I WON'T Miss About the Day Job

by Kirsten Scott

Hi Banditas and Buddies! If you've been anywhere within a two-mile radius of me (or is that 2 KB? Facebook? Twitter?) you can't help but have heard that I have been counting down the days until I'm done with my day job. And guess what -- I AM DONE! As of July 1, I have only two jobs: mom and writer. I have left the third job -- lawyer -- in the dust.

I worked as an attorney for ten years, so there was definitely some nostalgia as I left my empty office behind and turned out the lights. (Anyone remember that last episode of Cheers, when they turned off the lights in the bar? It was kinda like that.) I will miss the feeling of professionalism and focus, the way I'd put on my power suit and RULE the office. I loved the high-powered negotiations and the arguing. Mmmm. I love arguing. :-)

But there's soooo much I won't miss, and so to commemorate the end of the day job, I thought I would make a list (that's one thing I definitely won't stop doing!):


10. Frantically searching for someone to take care of the kids when they turn up sick Monday morning and I've got a hearing and my husband has a meeting and neither of us can cancel or reschedule at the last minute.

9. Drinking crappy office coffee.

8. Showing up late to meetings because I wanted to say hello to the kids' teachers.

7. Not being able to work out at home because I left my sneakers at the office, and vice versa.

6. Packing a lunch, leaving it at home, and then wondering if I should throw away the leftover spaghetti that's been sitting on the counter all day.

5. Getting home at 6:15 and getting dinner on the table by 6:30.

4. Hose.

3. Quickly clicking on a Word document when my boss comes in my office so he won't see me surfing romance sites on the internet.

2. Squeezing in time to write before 7AM or after 8PM.

And the number one thing I WON'T miss now that I've quit the day job?

1. Never having time to hang out and chat with the Banditas and Buddies, because I'm working three jobs!!

So...tell me about your day job? Are you happy with it? Do you long to leave it behind? What wouldn't you miss if you did?


limecello said...

Kristen - great post :D very cute
as for me :X I'm in the opposite boat >.< Would love to *have* a day job at the moment... or just a job...

And awesome. I'm the bad news bears :|

PinkPeony said...

Wow! Congrats, Kristen! I totally get the hose thing too. When I worked in an office, I spent $$ on hose and dry cleaning! I work from home now but my "boss" is flying in this weekend and he wants to "talk" to me...I know he's going to cut me loose which is fine with me! I won't miss the fax machine going off every morning at 0400 hours or irate clients kvetching about the wrong vintage being sent. I'd rather spend my time reading, writing and patroling for snails in the garden.
Congrats on the GR, Lime. Happy Fourth!

PinkPeony said...

oops...I meant K-I-R-S-T-E-N...:>)

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...


I'm sooo very happy for you on quitting the DDJ (dreaded day job)!

As you know, I quit mine six years ago and have NEVER regretted it for a minute. You won't either. :-)

HUGE UGH on the pantyhose! I HATED wearing them and can tell you the last time I've had on a pair -- the night of the Rita/Golden Heart Awards in 2006. I haven't been a nominee since then and have managed to find fancy pantsuits to wear to the Awards ceremonies I've attended since then. ;-)


Helen said...

Have fun with him lime he did have quite a few Tim Tams yesterday so he may be hyped up again not to mention the fine Irish whiskey that he drank as well LOL.


I am soo envious of you the one thing I truly want at the moment is to walk out of the door at work permanently I have worked there for 20 years we now have a new manager 2nd in charge (and this is a big firm) who I think suffers from short man syndrome he is taking everything off of the staff cutting back on staff making some of us older staff redundant to make room for his yes people and it is getting very uncomfortable to work there. Each day I wonder whether this will be my day to be made redundant and as much as I would love not to work there I am too old to get another job and too young to retire I need the money LOL how else am I going to buy the books I need to read let alone pay the mortgage.
But I would miss the friends I have at work truly there are some awesome people who work with me and it used to be such a great place to work.

Enjoy your 2 jobs Kirsten I know you are going to love it.

have Fun

flchen1 said...

Yay, Kirsten!! My only day job at the moment is mom--I stopped working for pay not too long after I had my first, and while I occasionally miss the grown-up interaction and being appreciated for having professional skills, I don't miss the politics or the annoying things about working ;) Hope you'll be enjoying your remaining two day jobs fully :)

Congrats on the GR, Lime, and crossing my fingers for you that you'll soon have an EDJ of your own ;)

MJFredrick said...

Congratulations! My mom's a teacher and just retired and she's torn about it. I would NOT be! I love where I work, but I would love not dealing with traffic everyday, and really, some days, just not dealing with people.

barb said...


I am retired and have been for 4 years and I don't know how I used to find time to work.... just ask Helen and she will tell you I am out a lot .... I go and have sewing days with my friends..... and once a month we meet other romance readers for lunch in Sydney..... the best thing about retiring was not having to get up at 5.00am anymore.... I am off to visit my son and his wife and grandson and spend next weekend with them....

Congratulations Lime hope he isn't too hyped up.... he was Ok when I visited him

Deb said...

Kirsten, this was a great post and boy, did I relate to it. I am a teacher and my husband drives over the road during the week, so #10 is probably #1 on my list. Except, I usually have to call in and deal with a very unprofessional, hard-hearted administrator. (My folks live over an hour away.) Don't you just hate trying to think of good meals when you're tired and with so little time? Lunches are often left on the counter or there is no time to grab something and school lunches are starch, starch, starch, so I skip lunch. (I have learned to keep a box of granola bars in my desk for emergencies.)

Congratulations to you for being a mom, first and foremost. Congrats to you for being able to write more at your leisure rather than in scrunched amounts of time. :)

Christie Kelley said...

Kristen, major congratulations on quitting the day job! You will love being a full time writer and mommy.

I long to do just that even though my day job is more part-time. It's still a pain the rear most of the time. Most real estate clients don't think anything of calling me at anytime of day or evening. Then, I'm supposed to drop everything for them. And the emotions! It's a house, for goodness sake, not a lover.

Oh, how I wish I could quit my day job!!

Anna Sugden said...

Congrats Kirsten!! It's a wonderful feeling - and especially so for you knowing that you have wonderful books coming out for us all to read and adore!

I was forced to do that when we moved to the US, because in post-9/11 NJ it was almost impossible to get the immmigration stuff sorted out for me to work.

At first, I found it really hard - doing without my own pay-cheque and not working. But, I got into romance writing, thanks to my lovely hubby. He suggested I do the romance writing course at B&N online (which is sponsored by the Gotham Writers Workshop) ... and I've never looked back.

The most difficult thing is other people taking your writing seriously as a job - you're not at home swanning! Not true of lovely hubby, but many others seem to think working from home=holiday.

The other hard thing is remembering to treat your writing as a job, with schedules and deadlines.

That said - I love it! No more commuting! No more tights (what you call hose)! No more office politics!

I love it even more now that lovely hubby has retired, so we're both doing what we enjoy from home (he's studying at Cambridge in history - something totally different from his chemistry background!)

And ... I LOVE my home office!!

Now ... if I could just sell!

MaryC said...

Congratulations, Kirsten!

I used to daydream about quitting and writing full time but then I found a teaching job that I love. My girls are grown so #10 is no longer an issue but it used to be. I had a principal reprimand me for not letting her know earlier that I'd be out. Excuse me, but until my daughter passed out cold on the bathroom floor at 7 am, I didn't know I was going to need the day.

Anyway, my problem now is that I love my day job so much that I don't feel the same sense of urgency to write. It's more my joy then my job.

Deb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Janga said...

Yay for you, Kirsten! Enjoy your freedom and increased writing time.

I took early retirement three years ago, and I confess to having mixed feelings about my choice. I don't miss getting up at 5:00 a. m., I don't miss the two-hours driving time M-F, I don't miss department politics, and most of all, I don't miss grading. But I do miss the intellectual stimulation and comraderie of being part of an academic community, and I do miss the excitement and challenge of the classroom and the students themselves, most of whom were interesting and affable young men and women.

I still work parttime doing some freelance writing, and I have finished one book and parts of two others. But still when time for a new semester to begin rolls around, I grow nostalgic. Fortunately, all it takes to cure me is a conversation with a friend who is in the midst of grading a set of freshman comp papers. :)

Deb said...

MaryC--Same with me! My 10-year-old got the stomach flu at 7:05
one morning. My principal had the gall to say, "So, what am I supposed to do about it?" Well, like, duh. Get me a sub.

Kirsten said...

Hi Lime! Congrats on the GR. I know, it's hard to be so happy bout quitting a job when lots of people need one so much!

But really, if you had a job, you wouldn't see the GR so much! Wouldn't that be tragic?

Kirsten said...

Hi Pink! I will definitely NOT miss all that dry cleaning. In fact, I'm not sure what I'm going to wear anymore, but I bet it won't be suits. I'll have to actually buy some casual clothes -- right now, when I get home from work I get right in my jammies. LOL.

Good luck with the boss -- I hope you get your wish, whether that's to keep the job or get rid of it! :-)

Kirsten said...

Hi AC! Thanks for stopping by -- you must be a little rough around the edges after that party yesterday. LOL.

I must say, I really hate the hose. My problem is that I bruise really easily, so I've always got big bruises on my legs, which isn't very attractive. I also have perpetually cold feet. So I usually leave the skirts in the closet and wear pants and shoes I can wear socks with.

I know, my life was so glamorous! How can I give that up?!

Kirsten said...

Hi Helen! Oh man, that boss of yours sounds awful. The only silver lining there is that he'll probably be made redundant before you will. Those kind of guys usually get tripped up by their own incompetence.

You do need to keep up your reading habits! We need you to tell us what you thought about our books. So I hope Mr. Boss man takes a hike! GRRR!

Kirsten said...

Hey Fedora! I'm sure you're enjoying that mom job -- it's a pretty good gig. :-)

I do wonder how much I'll miss the scene at work. I'm sure there will be days I will long for the quiet, professional office, where someone else fills the paper trays and fixes the copier.

But then I'll re-read this list and be happy all over again!

Have a great summer day with your little one!

Kirsten said...

Hey MJ -- my mom is 68 and still teaching fourth grade -- she promises every year will be her last, and then says she can't imagine leaving it when the time comes to put in her retirement papers.

I felt the same way as you -- why in the world would you keep at it if you could retire?! :-)

Kirsten said...

Hey Barb -- I have heard a lot of retired people say that! My MIL and FIL travel all the time visiting grandkids and doing all the things they didn't have time for when they were working. It sounds awesome!!

Kirsten said...

Hi Deb! it's so hard trying to work and keep the family together, isn't it? I don't know how many leftovers I've reheated and pots of spaghetti I've made. And man, I hear you on the starch thing. I love eating fresh veggies, but they take a LONG TIME to chop, don't they? When we do eat a good meal, I'm always amazed at how long it takes to really cook.

I hope you get your wish and have more leisure time someday down the road. (((HUGS))))

Kirsten said...

Christie, I have a friend in real estate and I'm always amazed at how people call her constantly -- and expect a call back within an hour, or they freak out. Any time of day or night! It's amazing.

Your books are so fabulous, I think it will be only a matter of time before you're quitting the day job too. And then we can celebrate together!

Kirsten said...

Hey Anna -- I love that your hubby is so supportive of your writing. What a great guy. I will admit I'm a little worried about people (including me) forgetting that I do have a job besides taking care of the home and kids. My writing is a job and I'll have to really work hard to make sure we all remember that.

I have been reading Rachel Gibson's hockey hunks and they're so fabulous -- I can't wait for yours to join them on the shelf!!

Kirsten said...

Mary, that's a great story (not the part about the icky principal -- man, that guy clearly never had to take care of his own kids). I think the best of all worlds is for each of us to find joy in what we do. Though my mom drives me crazy with her refusal to retire, I love that she found a career she finds so much joy and meaning in. My husband is the same way. He's a principal and he lives for the kids at his school.

Yay you! :-)

Kirsten said...

Hey Janga,

Congratulations on your early retirement! I'm glad you're enjoying it, and I think it's great that you've got some nostalgia --that means it was a good, fulfilling job.

I think I'll probably feel nostalgic as well, when I hear about a case my fellow attorneys are working on. I was in the energy industry, and I'll miss the sense of purpose we would bring to our jobs.

So I think the nostalgia is good -- but the freedom of quitting the job is even better!! :-)

Anna Campbell said...

Lime, congrats!

Kirsten, congratulations! I gave up the day job in 2005 and it's been great. I hope you have the same experience.

Lime, hope you get a job soon! Jen, sounds like you're ready to move on. Helen, so sorry to hear you're having trouble where you are. Hope that settles down!

Janga, I must say there isn't very much I've missed. I love being able to roll out of bed and wander down the corridor and go to work. I love being able to set my own, extremely eccentric hours. I do, however, get a bit nostalgic around Christmas time. My work Christmas party guest list is me! I missed the people - there were some great folks at my last job. But all round, I have to say giving up the day job has been GREAT!

Nancy said...

Kirsten, congratulations! I hope you're having a great time in the leadup to your book's release.

The good part of being a lawyer is helping people solve problems. The bad part is seldom working with people who are happy and usually working with people who have problems and are under some degree of stress about that.

I miss my full-time paycheck a lot. I often miss my co-workers, who were great people. The work itself, not so much. I greatly prefer writing and, when I draw a decent pool of students, teaching. I like the flexibility of part-time work.

Looking forward to Delcroix Academy!

Cassondra said...


Doing a major Snoopy Dance in Kentucky for you cuz you got to quit your day job!

That's just freakin' fantastic!

And yes, we expect to see more of you in the lair--in the writing caves AND at the parties, girlfriend.

And can't wait for the new release. I've been drumming my fingers for this book.

Donna MacMeans said...

Kirsten - I remember leaving the day job years ago so I could be closer to the kids. That's when I started my own accounting practice. It takes some getting used to - being at home. I missed having a sounding board when I had an idea to hash over, and heading out to lunch periodically. But I didn't miss the long drive in rush hour traffic. Didn't miss wearing suits & stockings. Didn't miss those long meetings that didn't accomplish squat. Didn't miss playing the babysitter for grownups.

So glad you'll be able to spend more time with us and the kids. One of the benefits of staying at home was that I got to attend all the parties and whatnot at school. My son still talks about the punch I made for their 2nd grade Halloween party (I used dry ice).
AND it means more fabulous books from you!


Beth said...

Whoo Hoo! Congrats, Kirsten! I'm sure you and your family will have a wonderful summer. And when it's time for the kids to start school again (and leaving you alone in the house!) you'll have to let me know if you're as excited as I always am ;-)

Caren Crane said...

Kirsten, congratulations on leaving the job behind!!

I would not miss those things, either. Our office has the world's worst coffee. It was never great, but at least we had Folger's and Maxwell House. Now, thanks to budget tightening, we have some no-name coffee that comes in these filter packs. I am very supicious because you can't see what's IN the filter packs and the coffee is disgusting. I don't want to know, really. I stopped drinking it!

Caren Crane said...

Oh, congratulations on snagging the GR, Lime!

PinkPeony, I remember when I was obligated to wear hose and heels to the office (early 90s). Horrible! I loved it when tech jobs went casual. We were early adopters and I enjoyed wearing khakis to the office every day.

Now, I work in a bank. Even though we are in the back office and see only the occasional vendor or corporate bigwig, we still must maintain business attire. Not hose and heels, thank goodness, but still nice business attire. *sigh*

Caren Crane said...

Helen, I am SHOCKED you let the GR into your good whiskey! He'll never settle for the cheap stuff at my house again. *g*

Hugs on the Napoleonesque boss and his deck clearing. I am so sorry to hear you may be out of a job. Still, with your years of experience and great attitude, you may be able to land something else that you wouldn't mind doing until you can retire.

You will be in my thoughts and prayers!

Caren Crane said...

Deb and MaryC, I remember those sick kid days so well! My husband and I were usually arguing about who had the more urgent need to go to work that day. For multiple days, we would tag team or each take half days off. I can't imagine doing it with a husband who traveled or as a single mom. Sheesh!

Now that my girls are teenagers and my son is grown, we don't have to worry about the sick kid part. Now we have to worry about how to get the four of us any number of different places with only two cars!

MsHellion said...

I love the list! Congrats!

Things I wouldn't miss about my day job:

1.) Stupid questions. (You know that line there are no stupid questions, that's wrong. Or is the saying, there are no stupid questions, only stupid people? Maybe stupid people should be #1.)

2.) Emails where students (adults, mind you, who are teaching your children) ask me something that I addressed in the previous email. In fact, you can see the answer to their question in the email response I gave to them. This is not in the same category as stupid questions or stupid people--this goes in the category of dealing with illiterate people.

3.) Folders.

I have to have a day job. I don't write well-enough (i.e published); the benefits are way too good to give up (that's how they reign you in at this job); I'm completely undisciplined at getting up at a reasonable hour of the morning so if I stayed home, I'd become a Bum.

Kate Carlisle said...

Ah, Kirsten, my jobless sister! We quit our day jobs on the same day and I couldn't be happier for both of us!

There's one thing I will really miss about my office and that is the incredible mail room. My guys were so wonderful and helpful and efficient, I'll really miss them. Every time I get in the car and drive to the post office, or the Fedex office, or Office Depot, I'll really miss them. Sigh.

Okay, I don't miss them enough to go back, so I'll stop reminiscing now. *g*

Congratulations again, Kirsten!!!! What a wonderful milestone!

Way to go, Lime! Hope you can keep the bird busy. I think he needs to work off a few dozen Tim Tams.

Louisa Cornell said...

CONGRATULATIONS, KIRSTEN !!! What a great milestone and a great place to be in life. Enjoy it to the max!

How I envy you! Anyone who knows me (and lord knows the Banditas and Buddies do whether they want to or not!)

My life's ambition at this point is to walk away from the DDJ FOREVER! I don't have to be a rich and famous writer. I'll settle for being a comfortable well known amongst historical romance writers!

Things I won't miss once I can finally leave Wal-Mart behind me?

1. I won't miss having to wear khaki and navy and a dorky name badge again!

2. I won't miss having to referee a fight between the Little Debbie vendor and the Flowers bread guy over shelf-space!

3. I won't miss listening to the squabbles of six women about stupid things like - she got a better schedule than I did, she took my cart, she didn't down stack her pallet, she put her stuff on my shelf, she is breathing near me. SHEESH! Some of these women are older than I am!

4. When I am working on my laptop on a break or lunch I won't miss having to hear "Are you writing a book about Wal-Mart?" My usual response to that question? Not even at gunpoint.

5. I won't miss having to get up at dawn's early crack and drag myself to work when the donut person calls in sick.

6. I won't miss working for people with the IQ of cabbage and the people skills of Adolph Hitler. (and those are just the people in management!)

7. I won't miss listening to people's screaming children for hours on end while their parents walk around the store in completely oblivious.

8. I won't miss being spoken to as if I am a mere serf in the kingdom of Wal-Mart and every customer acts like the lord or lady of the manor and assumes because I work at Wal-Mart that I am an idiot and completely unworthy of respect of any sort.

9. I won't miss spending hours in a walk-in freezer only to have to climb into a walk-in oven because someone got a bread rack hung up on the carousel.

10. I won't miss telling people "No we do NOT do anatomically correct cakes of nekkid ladies or nekkid men and we cannot write Happy Birthday ***hole or Happy Birthday *itch or Happy Birthday ****head on your cake!"