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Friday, March 2, 2007

The Train Has Arrived...

The ego trip is over...thank you all for boarding with me, I'm back to my regular scheduled neuroses...


Seriously--Haylo, Sora--thanks so much for the book appreciation...I was worried (I know the emphasis was on character development as opposed to blowing up bad guys--that doesn't always go over well...) spiral, penguinpants--so nice to have you here! Everyone else, you knows I luvs ya (and I will still be doing some nail biting...now that I know that you guys are getting the book, I'll be hoping you did not buy in vain:-) But, on to some ranting about work and some fiber content...

About the work ranting--

I knew last year that they might be taking the AP class away from me...my administrator doesn't particularly like me (he seems to feel it's rude for me to knit during staff meetings...I seem to feel it's rude for him to make unrealistic demands on us to change our curriculum and give us no prep time to do it...you know, that sort of thing...) but apparently the teacher who is going to be teaching the class next year has been telling kids that he's going to be the teacher, and no one has informed me.

Of course the weirdness with the nightmare in a size six didn't help...but, still...I mean--I started this program. I took a bunch of seniors in a school with such horrible test scores that they're threatening to send in the state to fix us, and I get between a 58-70% passing rate on a test that stands for college credit. And the only real requirements I have EVER asked for are, A. A basic ability to write a paragraph, B. A fluid grasp of the language (language learners welcome,though) and C. a willingness to participate. I built this program in my department--I took it from a teacher who got the class because he was the (then) principals crony from his old digs and who almost killed it (five took it, 1 passed) and I made it into a school staple. Don't you think, if they are going to give it to another teacher, they owe me the fucking courtesy of a warning?

I need to get out of here--that's all there is too it. And it hurts to admit that because it's been a good teaching week. My classes and I have finally come to a friendly detente, I'm finally happy to be here, and for the first time all year I feel the things I loved about teaching in the first place--useful, competent, and important to the people (students) I worked with.

I am fat and loud and blunt and cranky, and I have also had a motherfuckingshitkickerbendoverandtakeit kind of year... I am not an attractive presentation in a suit and an organized desk. Not at all. Still--it pains me (in my heart and other secret places) to have the guy who had this class before me--and who did not, in their words, try to stop the party that my little nightmare clique had become--tell his Juniors that he'd be teaching this class next year before anybody told me.

C'est La Vie. I promised my husband I'd print out a couple of packets for agents this weekend and send them on Monday. In a way, I don't want to do this--it's just one more admission that I'm dissatisfied with a job I used to be really proud of. It's also, in a way, a kind of self-destructive escapism for me, since the odds of my books getting picked up by an agent and a publisher are about the odds of Jensen Ackles picking me up in a gas station on the way to work...(except, of course, the fact that I'd be obligated my love of Mate to turn darling Jensen down.)

But that's depressing--Let's move on to the fiber content, which (although pictureless) is kind of fun...

February was going to be the month of turning FO's into WIP's--it only worked like that for the Arwyn cardigan, of course--I might have had better luck if the identity thieving crackhead hadn't made off with my damned sock, because that meant I had to start a whole other sock, and given my time frame, that hurt. However, now that the month is over, I've been obliged by impending babies (we're down to 3--hip hip huzzah...) to start one set of socks (for a student) one set of sockies and a hat (for a teacher) and one baby blanket from this book . The baby blanket I'm especially looking forward to--it's got intarsia stars and moon on it, and I'm doing it in yellow, orange and blue cotton classic...I've never worked w/this yarn before, and I'll probably regard it with all the warmth that I'd regard a cottonmouth snake when this is over, but right now it's bright and shiny and rich, so I'm kind of turned on. The sockies and hat (all) are going to be out of Lorna's Laces--and that yarn really does it for me, so it's going to be sort of like that Seinfeld thing--I may be obligated to sleep with this yarn, but that doesn't mean I don't enjoy it.

But thanks again, everybody, for the warm wishes and the praise (let me turn my face into that praise-shine again...I got chilly for a moment:-) The weekend in cali promises to be SPE-FUCKING-TACULAR--I wish us all days in the park with little people, happy hugs, and no 8"by2" personal car-movies of the 3 year old dumping cheez-it crumbs on his little sister to gales of delighted laughter... because I got one of those this morning, and it was very funny, but highly embarrassing when I dropped them off at the baby-sitters, and we were all orange.

CIOU!

14 comments:

Catie said...

you mean you aren't orange on a regular basis? I hope the job thing works out for you - it sucks that they are taking away your AP course. It sounds like it was the last nail in the coffin though.

Are there a lot of self-published books on amazon? how do you tell if they are self published? I'm gonna be putting in an amazon order this weekend so I will have book 1 in my hands relatively soon.

Amy Lane said...

Oooh... yeah--there are actually a lot of self-published books out there--look for the publishing companies--iuniverse, LuLu, Publish America and a couple of others. There are also publishing companies that ONLY publish books that are a certain paige #, certain subject matter, etc. Those are harder to spot.

I really hope you enjoy book 1--forgive me for the typos--I understand they get better in books 2 & 3...

Robin said...

I'm so sorry about your job, it sounds like your really getting screwed. I hope it gets better for you soon. On the good news front, I just received your book today. Yea! I plan to dive in right away. On the knitting front, I think I'm going to need one on one instruction. It's sad really. I sat on my couch for a good part of the morning looking from the instruction book to the needles, back and forth, as if they would move all by themselves. I did get the first part, the basting on and the knit stitch but it went downhill from there. Oh well, I'll keep at it. I'm bound to get it some day, with a lot of luck.

The Lady in Red said...

Wait, what? They are handing out assignments already? We need to chat. I want to know who the unprofessional asshat is (aside from the head prickweenie.) I'm sorry they suck. I'm sorry they can't see what they are chasing away.

KnitTech said...

I've got a baby set I need to finished, which is due in March. Oops, she had it Thursday. The yoke to the baby sweater is still sitting on my desk.

Roxie said...

I would suggest that you confirm the rumor before you go to war over it. And start filing applications at private schools. (Probably not Christian ones though. Their loss.) Of course, pretty soon Vulnerable, Wounded and Bound will be best sellers, and you can tell the whole school system to take a flying fuck at a rolling donut becaue you are going on tour.

NeedleTart said...

The best job I ever had (teaching) was in a Catholic school. I was the desiginated "diversity" teacher. To this day students willcome up to me in the mall and sing the Dreidel song . I have been encouraging The Baby to read your blog. He thinks he wants to go into education. You know the longer I am around the more I realize that teachers don't need more money (which would all go to the administration's newest shiny toy anyway) they just need to be allowed to *teach* and can't we put administrators somewhere really quiet and padded?

Rae said...

~sigh~
And people wonder why our education system is so abysmal. How can they do this to those teachers who are so dedicated (even if they do knit in meetings). ~grin~

Serious suckage, Amy. It totally bites. You know, you spend so much of your life in your job -- physical hours there plus all the mental and emotional time and drain from it -- that it should be of a most minimal suck. Maybe even an enjoyment, if you're lucky.

Seriously? What about another school?

BTW, Amy, do you get comments that you don't publish?

Amy Lane said...

uhm...actually, Rae, no--no comments that I haven't considered publishing since that one...I'm thinking of maybe taking all the precautions out...

And thanks, as ALWAYS for the words of comfort, everybody...I did confirm the rumor, Roxie (but it was good advice--I'm likely to fly off the handle as often as not...) Maybe it's a good thing, really--I still think I'm the best woman for the job, but it WILL be a big stresser off my plate. And it will be another reason to look to make my living another way... maybe someday I'll post a rant on what I think is REALLY wrong with education...but right now, I'm just wishing I'd had needltart as a teacher--she would have rocked out loud:-)

goodwitch said...

Quit! Then you can spend more time knitting or WRITING! I LOVED Bound!! I couldn't wait for Amazon to get it (sorry!) so I ordered it directly from the publisher and read it in one big gulp last night (maybe why I'm not too awake today) and I think it's your best book yet. My only regret is that you haven't found a publisher yet to release your books as mass market paperbacks so I can afford to get copies for ALL my friends (not just the few special ones I can justify spending $25 a book for). And I'm not lending my copies to anyone in case they don't come back.

Haylo said...

Thanks for the shout out! I loved the book and I was happy to write a review for it.

On another note, I work at a school for children with umm problems, and one thing I always find is that the administrators makes decisions that don't benefit the children. I've grown jaded about it and it seems to always repeat itself. In our school for instance we've lost something like 10 staff members this year alone due to administrative decisions.

So keep your head up and do what you have to do to make you happy. Plus you know, you writing full time for a publisher would make us all very very happy.

Amy Lane said...

Yeah...my dream is to sell my books to a publisher and ditch education until I'm a feisty geezer in my 70s and need to pay for my sins...until then, I guess I'll just learn to appreciate my Juniors as much as I adored my Seniors...

And up a few comments to poor Robin...honey, if you can't find a buddy in the LYS to help you out, there are DVD's out there--it sounds like you actually need to see a stitch MADE--once that happens, you'll be styling...(honestly? Casting On is the hardest part!!!)

NeedleTart said...

Yup, the kids love me, the teachers love me, the administrators (and administrators-to-be, you know who they are), not so much. I hate teaching from the reader with no input from the teacher ("just the script, and nothing but the script,mam'm").
Good thing I'm a sub and can get away with my subversity ("Oh, I thought it would help the students understand better if I used the big words....in French. They seem to enjoy it and remember better.")

Robin said...

Thanks for the encouragement.