Monday, January 19, 2015

Magical Mondays: The List

Last June, I had listened to some old Napoleon Hill recordings, and per their recommendation, made a list of some objectives as well as how I intended to pay for the things I wanted to accomplish. For a few weeks, I slept with it under my pillow, then one day moved it to a drawer and forgot about it. I found it the other day while cleaning out some things and was pleasantly surprised to see that all of the things on the list have come to pass with perhaps one exception - and even that exception is actually true at the moment (whether it will continue to be true over the next few months remains to be seen).

Here's an example of an objective/accomplishment that I had written on 6/14/14:
I wake up in the mornings feeling happy, peaceful, excited and inspired to work on whichever type of art I choose to do, and that is how I spend my "working days" - all of the effort to accomplish this feels like fun and is easy and enjoyable because I am working with my strengths and passion.

A payment example:
I will work toward my objectives every day.
There are several more, but you get the idea - and they are all true as of today.

I keep the list by my computer so I see it every morning now. It helps on those days when I have doubts (and I do have those days!) to remember that dreams do come true.



Sunday, January 11, 2015

Another year, another change

So, it's been almost two years - wow! - since my last post (which was, coincidentally, about transformation) and now I'm here to talk about what a difference a year (or two) makes.  Almost two years ago, I decided to pursue more of my digital design work due to competing priorities. This met with varying success - sometimes more business than I could handle on top of too much "day job" duties made me have to put it on hiatus for a while, then started up again last year.  I hadn't been blogging much in the past few years anyway, since work and Facebook seemed to be where most of my social time was spent.

Anyway, 2014 was full of challenges and rewards. Day job was a bear as always (working 50-100 hours per week), and my part-time gig, Sterling Design Studio, was also keeping me fairly busy. Then at the beginning of October, my wonderful boss was let go and our whole department was combined with another, less worker-friendly department in an unexpected restructuring.  From then onward, I was miserable, overworked, and really not liking the way things were headed.  I'd already been having to turn business away because of work conflicts, but with the new supervisor, I was going to have to cut back or even quit the artwork altogether.

About that time I ran across three things that had a major impact:  the books "Be a Free Range Human" by Marianne Cantwell and "Escape From Cubicle Nation" by Pamela Slim, and this video of a commencement speech by Jim Carrey. 



http://www.buzzfeed.com/maycie/this-61-second-video-of-jim-carreys-commencement-speech-will?utm_term=.da6OkYAZq&sub=3324049_3121257

There's more about what transpired here (SM Freedman Blog) in an interview that I gave to S.M. Freedman, author of the "The Faithful" and one of my clients.  (Side note regarding that book: one of Oprah Winfrey's staff read it and liked it enough to give to Oprah to read, and suggested it for her book club. Congratulations to S.M. Freedman - a great writer and a wonderful person!)  

Anyway, to make a long story short:  I quit my day job. Am now a full-time artist and writer - just like I've always wanted to be. :)  Where it will lead from here, who knows... but at least I plan on enjoying the journey while I can.

So, that's my recent big news - what's up in your world that you'd like to share?


Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Transformation News

For the past year or so, I've struggled with finding time to both write and do cover art, and found that I was putting in far more time (voluntarily and otherwise) doing the artwork. Hence, I decided that what little spare time I had might be better spent focusing on the area that seemed to come more naturally to me: artwork.

With that in mind, I started systematically removing references to any books I still had out there (and am in the process of removing the last one, once the rights are reversed).  At the same time, I started highlighting the digital design work more and more.  I had taken a break from it entirely last summer because the day job was too overwhelming, but am now ready to get back in the ring. 

I also started moving away from the "Kate" name on Facebook, Twitter, etc. because I'd always done the book covers for Cobblestone under the name of Rebecca K. Sterling. (Not that "Kate" is going to disappear entirely, mind you - she'll be back eventually, but with a different genre as well.)
  
So, if you start seeing posts under the names of RK Sterling or Rebecca Sterling, no need to wonder who the heck is that... :)

Meanwhile, my new website is up (more to add and tweak, but wanted to get something out there for now):  http://www.sterlingdesignstudios.com/  It's a bit graphic intensive, so it may take a moment to load.  I'm still figuring out how to handle that.

What news would you like to share?

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

New Direction

Once again, it has been a while. Since this is actually my first post of 2013 (wow, sorry!) I figured I'd get caught up on what's been going on. The day job has been crazy busy as always.  I've given up thinking that there will ever be any down time, and finally stop torturing myself with thoughts of, "Oh, in just 6 more weeks things will slow down and I'll be able to write/paint/sculpt/do-any-fun-thing-I'd-rather-be doing." 

Because frankly, ain't gonna happen. I've been consistently working anywhere from 50 up to 110 hours a week for the past several years, and I don't think that's going to change until my kid graduates college and can afford to be on her own (at least another 4 years).  At that point (if I'm still alive), I hope to be able to become the starving artist I always wanted to be. :)

Meanwhile, I'll just add in the writing/painting/sculpting/cover art/etc. as I can, try to enjoy it as a hobby for now, and not torture myself thinking that I should be doing more to make a business of it.  The hope is that during the next however-long-it-will-take, I would have at least accomplished a few things that I'll have as a starting point if/when I do have time again.

And believe it or not, 4 - 5 years goes by really quickly.  Heck, I've been doing this blog for 7 years now!  It seems like yesterday...

And I don't regret a minute of it. :) 

And even though I've been working like crazy, I took the time to start my "good year jar", and realized that even in the midst of the insanity and occasional disappointments, I've still been averaging 2 - 3 really good things per week.

How are things going for your 2013?