Wednesday, January 6, 2010

My Work

“Knowledge truly is power and literacy is the skill that unlocks the gates of opportunity and success.”

- Barack Obama (President of the United States and also a Red Room author)

This quote appeared on the homepage of

This is my ninety-eighth post in three months, today marks the three-month anniversary of my blog, and I have thirty followers. (Don't ask me how many hours I spent yesterday changing the template and font colors, especially when each post didn't take the new color and all of the paragraphs were spaced too far apart, so I went into each post to fix them. But now my blog is easier to navigate). I’m wondering what my blog has accomplished and what I hope to achieve as I continue.

As I’ve mentioned, in September I began this blog to share my zany life as a substitute teacher, going from tucking in three-year-olds for naptime to teaching twelfth-graders Advanced Placement Chemistry. My alter ego is the superhero, Substituteteacherwoman.

Before I became a substitute teacher, I never imagined I’d become one. After I started, I thought I’d quickly obtain full-time employment or at least a children’s book contract. Almost a year later, because of the economy, I’m still doing the same job (which is actually a different job every day) and there’s no end in sight. It could all change in a flash, but that moment hasn’t arrived.

Most of my posts are about teaching, but many are devoted to writing (Writer), family (Domestic), and often, a mix of all aspects of my life (Miscellaneous). My fewest posts are under the label “Writer”, though that’s what I consider myself because each post is a writing exercise and most posts touch on my writing. I’ve logged hundreds of pages on this blog, and I’m wondering if the life of a substitute teacher, my life, would make an interesting memoir. And like good memoirs, I need to be honest about my life, but want to avoid being exploitative. Just like fiction, I need to experience personal growth. What is the end to my story? I believe it hasn’t yet come, so I’ll spend more time contemplating the value of the endeavor. Perhaps if I begin the manuscript, it will be like anything else I’ve written, where I don’t know the end until I’m there, and at that moment, it all comes together.

Red Room has announced a two-day contest to write about “My Work Blog” and the winner will get their blog sent out to 25,000 members. But my post needs to mention what I want out of winning this contest. So, what do I want? I’d like to get a job interview that turns into full-time employment teaching Social Studies, but I doubt Red Room can help me to that end. If I win, and this e-mail goes out to agents and publishers, I hope that something about my blog will impress them and…. you never know.


  1. i feel ya...if i can live off my blog i'd be happy! getting paid to write whatever you want. YES PLEASE!

  2. Your blog is funny, bananas. Thanks for the comment.

  3. I love your blog and am so proud of you. You will get the job you deserve and are over qualified for, but I hope you'll continue your blog:)

  4. Thanks, Kathleen. I just got a comment on my newest post from someone who subbed for four years before she found a full-time teaching job, so this blog may be around for a while.

  5. Rather interesting place you've got here. Thanks for it. I like such topics and everything connected to this matter. I would like to read a bit more on that blog soon.

    Hilary Swenson

  6. @ Anonymous/Hilary Swenson, thank you. I appreciate the nice comment.

  7. Lovely sharp post. Never thought that it was this easy. Extolment to you!

  8. Thirty followers just over a year ago...
    ::breaks into "what a difference day makes", but replaces the word "day" with "year"::

    As far as I've seen, your blog works like a good memoir (as you define it)... And it does you credit on several levels.

  9. Alesa, thank you. Until Nicola Morgan had her birthday blog party in January 2010, I had so few followers. I didn't have a clue as to what I was doing. And I didn't have my blogger profile linked to my blog, so when I commented on other people's blogs they couldn't access mine. When I realized it a few months later, I had a real "Duh" moment.

    Good content is important, but it's got to be easy to find too.