This week, as I gear up for the Rideau Lakes Cycle Tour, a 354-kilometre, round-trip bike ride from Ottawa to Kingston, and back, I think to myself: Ross, what are you getting yourself into?
But I like a good challenge, and this will be the most physically demanding one of my life.
And that's good, because I feel that I don't challenge myself enough anymore.
I have to admit, I'm a bit lazy and I like to do what's comfortable, what's familiar. I go to work and perform my job to the best of my ability, meeting my deadlines and getting my projects completed. I come home, tend to my family's needs and see that our house doesn't completely fall apart. I enjoy my photography and my beer, and my writing. I like to travel when I can and relax when all is said and done.
Life for the most part, is fairly routine.
When I run into friends that I haven't seen in a while, and they ask me to tell them what is new in my life, I'm always stumped to come up with something. I think, don't you read my blog? Don't you follow me on Facebook? Don't you read my tweets?
But even if my friends follow me on social media, they don't get the whole picture.
You see, I'm content, but I'm not completely happy. I need a change.
One of the most important principles by which I write on my blog (sort of my prime directive), is that I don't talk about work. Sure, sometimes on Twitter I share certain feelings about deadlines, projects, and people with whom I interact, but I never get into details or name names. I talk about how I have handed off five documents for review in one day, and I feel exhausted, or I'm frustrated by a piece of software that's giving me grief.
Or, how someone I didn't know asked me to make him a cup of coffee.
It's all pretty innocuous. Stuff that almost everybody talks about at any job.
I would never get down on my work, complain about my company, or rat out any of my coworkers. First, I have no reason to do so. My work is fairly routine, my company is solid, and I have a great bunch of colleagues. I'm well-paid and have decent benefits. And that's all I'll say about work.
Except this: I don't want to be there anymore. I want change. I want a new challenge. I don't want to be a technical writer anymore.
I want to keep writing, but I want that writing to change, to be exciting for me. I want to sit down each day, or each week, and say, "What's new?"
If I could find a job that gives me as much joy as writing this blog does, I would take it in a heartbeat.
I know: good jobs for writers are getting harder to find. Still, I hope that there are still some out there.
Apart from soliciting for my book or for trying to get you to try a beer, or for challenging you to identify a part of this city, I don't ask for much. But I'm appealing to you, my readers: if you think you know of a writing gig that would satisfy my need for a new challenge, let me know. I'm great to work with, I'm energetic, I'm full of great ideas, and (if I do say so myself) I'm a pretty decent writer.
(I do photos too.)
I need a change.
Oh, and speaking of challenges, wish me luck this weekend!