Summer Vacation

Today is my last day at Kirkwood. Tomorrow begins my summer vacation.

Yes, teachers do get a summer vacation. It’s the nature of our biz. No students=no work. Technically, it could also mean no pay, but most of us are wise enough to divvy up our salaries over the entire year. There are pros and cons to this system. I mean, we get a lot of vacation, unlike most of you. Unfortunately, we do not command corporate salaries, and we cannot vacation when we want to. It’s all about the tradeoffs.

Unlike most teachers, I have an additional six weeks in my contract, due to the nature of my administrative position. We need someone to orient and organize our classes for the upcoming semesters. That’s me. So, most of my college colleagues have already been on vacation since mid-May. I have more vacation this summer than I usually do, because Christmas break is now five weeks, and I have to work all of it save the 10 or so days the college is closed for everyone. So, I get 8 weeks off this year. This is unprecedented since I’ve become coordinator.

And you know what I’m gonna do with those 8 weeks. I’m gonna travel like a world class Type A workaholic. AND I’m gonna finish Klaereon #1. For you, Walter Jon Williams. Because you told me to. And not just for Walter, of course. For many, many supportive readers and friends and most importantly, for myself. A complete Klaereon book, which I hope publishers will love, but if not so, then which will be self-published when I am retired and can do that sort of thing.

There are a lot of Klaereon books, and they are not all interconnected, but kind of independent beings that exist alone, so I will write them as long as I have life and breath. But after this book, I’m going to try to fix my flawed werewolf novella. If I can’t get it to work this time, I trunk the beast. Too bad too, because it’s got some beautiful Southern Iowa decay in it. But if I can make it work, I think I’ll get a writer merit badge.

And then, a brief stop to create Abigail Rath into an Oni Press comics proposal. She might work well that way and she hasn’t received any lasting agent love. Yet. There’s still a handful of agents that I want to look at her.

And then, the question is: do I write the next Klaereon book, or do I go back to Grant, David, and Hild in Decorah? Let’s just see what I feel like. And if the aforementioned publishers like that first demon binding book.

Wow. Look I’ve put all the horses at the back of that cart there. You see what I just did?

Anyway, I gotta get some work done today. This week’s been kind of a bust. If you don’t know why, see yesterday’s post. Nothing says goodbye to Kirkwood like trying to get hold of an ACT testing rep. Go, me.

Author: Catherine Schaff-Stump

Catherine Schaff-Stump writes fiction for children and young adults. Her most recent book, The Vessel of Ra, is the first book in the Klaereon Scroll series. She is currently working on its sequel, as well as penning the middle grade adventures of Abigail Rath, monster hunter.

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