I hate being caught between choices. Sometimes you're going to stumble no matter which direction you choose.
Nasty truth, but true nonetheless.
I long to attend RWA's National Conference. I've attended before, and there is nothing quite like the energy one absorbs when surrounded by like-minded individuals. Also, GH finalists are often sought out by editors and agents. A nice change of affairs, I assure you.
Circumstances, however, may preclude making use of that pastel pink finalist's ribbon.
(Which leads me to ask, don't you think a finalist's ribbon should be a less insipid color? I mean, really. Baby-girl pink? We aren't writing nursery rhymes. Wouldn't a vivid, vibrant color that speaks of dashing heroes and intrepid heroines, shouts the joy of accomplishment be more appropriate?
Random survey concluded. Back to the blog.)
Those circumstances include the anticipated birth of our first grandson less than a week before conference. If our daughter didn't live 1200 miles away, that would be a no-brainer. But she does.
I could fly down, but I would go alone. My beloved would never weather the trip. Twenty minutes in the car has him huffing "cleansing breaths" to control the pain. Two or more hours stuffed into an airplane seat would be tanamount to torture.
Even so, he'd suffer through it (with the help of pain meds)for her, but our dear daughter has made it clear she would prefer to bring the child to us; she confessed she'd rather we didn't see the home they're currently renting. (If that's not enough to set a mother's inner alarms buzzing, I don't know what is!) Of course, that homecoming could happen anywhere between six weeks and six months after the birth--if we're lucky.
She is so adamant, however, she encouraged me to go to conference. Now, that might not seem like much to you, but this is the child who has resented my writing and the time it commands from the moment I decided, once she,the youngest, entered Middle School, the children were sufficiently independent to permit pursuing my own deferred goals.
The 180 only makes the Mom reflex jerk harder.
Then there is the cost. NYC is extremely expensive. The good news is I needn't fly to get there. The bad news is, well, NYC is extremely expensive. I know I'm not alone debating the wisdom of incurring additional debt in this economic climate with the future uncertain and no guarantee of professional advancement.
The choice seems clear enough, doesn't it?
It is---until you consider the networking, the contacts, the personal recommendations and face-to-face interactions that could be the catalyst that sells the books languishing on your hard-drive and improve your financial outlook.
So here I am, caught between the devil and the deep blue sea, a brick wall and a hard place, the irresistible force and the immoveable object. (Did I miss any?)
I've been a finalist twice before and didn't capitalize on the distinction because of my sweetheart's health problems. After five years, I've been forced to accept their impact on our lives. What I will never accept, however, is giving up on the future.
That insipid ribbon could make a world of difference to that future. Then, again, it could just be another accolade hung on the wall.
Either choice, whether professional or financial, is a risk.
Thank heaven I can pray---and swim.