Hello to my handful of readers. waves~
There hasn’t been much of my own voice on this blog besides talking about food since I started it early this year. I’m still learning how to find that voice, and writing about food was an easy starting point for me.
Writing well about food, however… that is still a work in progress.
I haven’t been as prolific as I would like, and I also haven’t been as timely with my food posts as I would like. I’m working on it, but I’ve also been struggling really badly with my mental health in the last few months. Probably for the last few years to be honest, but events last year tipped it from being manageable to over the cliff, bouncing off a few rocks, into a pit and now I’m still finding my way back up.
Last Christmas, I quit my longtime job in IT because of severe burnout. Sometimes people don’t come back from severe burnout. I realised that when I started a new job shortly after and had to quit again because of said burnout and all its accompanying friends.
I’ve got the wonderful cocktail of Depression, its good friend Anxiety, and when I was working, Stress. Thank goodness that last bit is gone now, as that was mainly environmental.
I’ve been managing my mental health the best I can, but my brain chemistry really really goes out of whack, and I just lose days to feeling like crap. It’s something that can never be cured and is something I live with on a day to day basis even though it doesn’t always show.
That aside, what else have I been up to since I quit?
I made the decision that I want to write for a living. I’ve always wanted to do it but was just too spent at the end of a mentally draining workday to do it for the last few years. And when I did write, it was mainly a lot of fiction that never sees the light of day anyway (and still won’t unless I finish those projects and get them out there).
Battling my own head and having to quit full-time work to recover meant that it was now or never. I’m taking it at my own pace (mental health and all), but I fully aim to get there, one way or another.
I took a freelance writing course by the Australian Writers’ Centre to really dust off my professional writing cobwebs and learn all the things I didn’t know I didn’t know. It’s a great course with a great graduate track record, but unfortunately, I don’t have a success story to show for it just yet.
I travelled to Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and Kuching and met up with friends and family. That was a life-changing experience, and just cemented what I wanted to do with my life. Thank you to everyone who made time for me.
I finally revamped the website on CharmaineHon.com. It’s now a portfolio site for freelance writing. It is still a work in progress, but it’s a place to collate all my work to-date.
I started writing for Weekend Notes. Some of my review pieces are now there, and I post links here whenever I have something up. I do get paid there, but it’s just a few dollars a piece depending on page views and likes, but it’s someplace to start.
I’ve been lurking on Medium for a while in search of good online reads and have finally started posting stuff there. And again, I’m a lot less prolific than I would like to be.
Only two things are up so far:
- Depression Is – a description of what it’s like living with depression.
- Throwing out the life script – a much longer piece summarising how I went from full-time worker bee with my life and career path all planned out to now winging it as a starving writer. It also talks about why I’ve been so afraid to have a voice, and how I’m learning to find it again. Writing more is definitely part of it.
I’ve been pitching publications. Well, I’m not as prolific, so I’ve only actually sent four so far. Of those four, I’ve got two rejections and two no-replies. I know it’s also a numbers game, so slowly but surely…
I’ve got a bunch of half-written pieces for here and Weekend Notes that I’ve yet to finish up, so I’m still working on them. Hopefully, I can get them up soon.
I’m hoping I don’t wake up to yet another new Australian Prime Minister. Especially one that is xenophobic, racist and selfishly throwing stability out the window just because he can. C’mon Libs. Stop beating the dead horse of democracy and just get on with the business of government.
Thank you for reading, and your usual programming will resume shortly…