So I Didn’t Win Mega Millions

“What would you do if you won all that money?” a coworker asked me after I had announced that I had just bought my very first lottery tickets.

“Well… I’d pay off my parents’ house. Get each of my brothers a brand new car. I would buy this school a new roof, get every child here and IPAD and replace the playground.”

“But what would you do for yourself?”

“Oh that’s easy,” I replied. “I would quit this job. I would quit this job so hard.”

My coworker looked at me and laughed. “How would you do it?”

“MC Hammer flashmob,” I answered easily. Of course I had thought about this for a while. “I would have hundreds of gold parachute pants made, hire a choreographer and pay every employee in this district to learn the dance and at the end of it we’d all pose with our arms folded across our chests and yell STOP QUITTIN’ TIME.”

Hammer time? No Quittin' time!

My coworker shook her head at me and said, “You know you’re crazy, right?”

“No, darling. They call rich people eccentric.”

Alas, I woke up Saturday morning to find out that I didn’t win the huge jackpot. BUT I had hit four of the six numbers which means I won a cool $150. Which is clearly not enough to hire a flash mob and quit my job ,which I do love by the way. All of this money talk got me thinking… If my writing career takes off, would I quit my day job?

Now I’m not talking about Nora Roberts, Nicholas Sparks or Stephen King money, but enough money to feed my shoe habit and make the bills. 640 million is certainly way more than most writers can ever expect to make and if I had won that money work would not be an issue because I would spend all of my time traveling or doing good things that people with loads of money should do.

But could writing alone fill my days? I really don’t know the answer to that. Probably not. I’m a single girl, no kids. My family lives an hour away and I actually like my job. Believe me at times it sucks but mostly its pretty cool, especially when kids who are now in highschool come back just to visit me. (Gag I feel old when they do that.) Right now my job fulfills me and writing is so solitary. Plus this girl likes her health care!

But my answer might change in a few years when I’m married with some babies of my own. Writing seems to be the perfect career for a busy mom. Write when the kids are at school, be home in the afternoons to do homework. Bring in money doing what I loved.

My answer might not be the same as yours. If you could do it …. if you could survive on writing alone would you quit your job? And if you would like to see what my flashmob dream looks like click HERE.

As always happy writing!

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19 thoughts on “So I Didn’t Win Mega Millions”

  1. Congrats on the $150! We got zilch on our tickets. $650 Million dollars divided three ways is just silly! Couldn’t they just give 650 people a million bucks? That’s really enough for anyone IMO.

    I love my day job. It’s rewarding, keeps me active, and if I tried to quit, my clients would track me down and come to my house to get their massage fixes. I often feel a bit like a drug dealer when people call me up and say things like, “I neeeed an appointment asap!” I have one of those few and far between jobs that give me the immediate gratification of making a huge difference in someone’s life in a one hour period of time. Everyone is happy to see me, leaves relaxed and smiling, and pays me good money for the privilege of providing a healthy alternative to drug therapy. It’s the only job I can think of where I get told how wonderful I am four or five times a day. It makes me feel loved and appreciated–something that no amount of money can do. And as you said, writing is very solitary. I’d get squirrelly if all I did was my writing job. And my butt would likely grow to mammoth proportions!

    Ideally, I’d like to cut my day job back to two days a week, which would give me much more time to do this writing gig. Right now, I’m basically working two full time jobs and I know I can’t keep that up forever. My author paychecks are just beginning to amount to more than shoes and lunch money, so we’ll see if that grows and stays consistent enough over the next year to afford to cut back.

  2. Loved your answers Paula and Jamie! You key in on the truth about full time writing: it’s a very solitary occupation! No way would I want to spend my days alone all the time. I’m actually a very social person and enjoy having people around. Even when I had to commute over an hour each day to my office in downtown Boston, I insisted I’d go crazy working from home by myself all day.
    So no, in a quirky twist of fate, not only do I write–alone–but my day job is consulting which I also do from home–alone!
    Geesh!
    Lately I’ve been thinking of getting a part-time job at Dunkin Donuts so I can get a dose of socializing in…
    So my answer is that I’d be happy to turn the consulting in for more writing, but then I’d have to do something else, not for the money, for the people.

  3. The flash mob video just made my day! Awesome! My boys and I just MC Hammer’d in the living room. Good times. My hubby and I have huge plans for how we’d spend big lottery money. This time, we even bought a ticket – which I think increases our odds tremendously. Being a stay-at-home mom / writer is a GREAT job. The best and hardest I’ve ever had. And the least paying, thus far. This is the first year my kids are in school, so the first year I’ve really had any amount of time for myself. And of course, I over committed to volunteer work. I’ll take on a bit less next year and hope to get more done.

    1. It’s my all time favorite video. I watch it when I’m feeling sad and it cheers me up better than chocolate.

  4. Well, I DID quit my day job. And I don’t regret it. But….

    I found out I am not, by nature, a solitary person. I am single, live alone, and work at home. I found out that THIS DOES NOT SUIT ME.

    I miss the office. Oh, not the work itself (although I enjoyed it) and certainly not the ubiquitous meetings. But I miss being part of a team, going to lunch with friends, and asking what everyone has planned for the weekend. I knew my new lifestyle would take some getting used to, but I vastly underestimated the negative effect of isolation on my creativity and motivation.

    So, I work in public. I go to coffee shops, bookstores, and libraries. Most of the time I’m still alone, but I always publish where I’ll be on meetup and, one or two days a week, other writers join me. It helps. And, actually, I’m looking for a part time job right now.

    Now, if I had won the megamillions, I could always PAY people to hang out with me. 🙂

    1. For some reason I always feel uncomfortable writing in public, like someone is going to catch me writing smut in public.

  5. I think i would always need to be involved in something, if not work, then volunteering. For one, it would keep me sane, but the real reason is, I need to have experiences that help me grow, which in turn, makes me a better writer.

  6. I would. I don’t mine being alone. I do my best work when I am alone and can work interrupted. I have had the misfortune of being laid off twice now and although I do spend a few hours each day job hunting, I spend the remainder of my time writing. I hate the backstabbing office politics and would be more than happy to stay home and write.

    1. Working at a school I’ve never witnessed backstabbing office politics. But thats awful if it happened to you.

  7. I write for a living, and I love it 93% of the time. The other 7%, I miss coworkers, and I had some great ones! If I could be a surgeon one night a month, that’d be great. Or a horse trainer.

    1. Really surgeon? I did througly enjoy disecting a fetal pig in bio but I don’t know if I could cut open a person.

  8. I can never only do one thing. I am involved with my main career, interior design and painting and art directing and ummm, I’m thinking, I’m thinking . . . oh yes, writing when I am not doing my other business. What am I leaving out . . . ? I know I must be forgetting something, like family. My hubby works at home, so we work together everyday, all day, most of the time. We both feel very blessed. Fun post, thanks Jamie.

  9. I think about this all the time, but like so many others, I wonder if writing full time would be a bit too lonely. I love my day job, but I wish there were more hours in the day. By the time I get home and finish dinner and start writing, I’m lucky if I get an hour in before I’m beat. Ideally, I’d love to work part time and write the rest of the time. But I need to keep us in shoes 🙂
    Glad you brought this up, Jamie.

  10. I’ve thought it through, more than once, but no, I wouldn’t be able to sit home and do nothing all day. Not that I’m calling writing nothing, in my daydream I don’t work at all. However, if I had a zillion dollars, I would have to still have at least a part time job. I sadly really like my job. It would be super nice to not worry about having money to buy books or special snacks or even working til 601 every night though. Plus knowing I could quit would make life easier sometimes.

  11. I want some Hammer pants now! I didn’t win the lottery either, but I don’t mind so much now that I’ve seen that vid 🙂

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