Are straightjackets ever on sale?

I’ve had this Fairy Tale Asylum idea for almost two years. No, not the blog, though that would be the medium.

I used the idea for the stories I wrote in 2010′s story-a-day challenge. The stories I eventually wanted to fit together–the stories of inmates of an asylum and the inmates had ended up committed (so to speak) through their fairy tale experiences. Wouldn’t you be slightly mad if you’d slept through 100 years or been left for dead in a glass coffin in the woods?

I can see the asylum in my mind and I know the name of the head nurse and the caretaker. Hmm. Maybe I should be in asylum.

Anyway. The problem is, as always, as I’m sure you experience yourself, is time. The devil of time.

I’m used to a particular work schedule and have for the last few years learned my best way to work around it, knowing that at certain moments, I’d have breaks to get things done if I could manage it during the semester.

Well, that schedule is changing, and I look at it and am filled with despair. How on earth am I ever going to write enough?

ever hopeful

Not only have 8 more hours been adding to my teaching week–taking up the time I used to use for planning/grading/etc (and adding to the amount of planning/grading/etc I have to do), but now three weeks have been added to my teaching year.

Three weeks doesn’t seem like much… This new schedule ends the week I had during winter break when the kiddo was in school but I wasn’t back at work. Sure, I’ll still have two weeks off, but the kiddo will be with me (and it is the husband busiest time of year so he’ll be working longer hours). I used to love that week to myself…

And the two week break between summer and fall terms has been taken off the calendar completely. No break at all between the summer and fall terms. We’ll be teaching from May until Thanksgiving without a day off. (Maybe the 4th of July if it falls on a week day–and my son will be off too though the husband will be working.) If you teach, you know that isn’t just time in the classroom. That’s one weekend between terms to grade final exams and papers, to turn grades in for all my students, and to prepare for the new term.

I look at the upcoming year and see piles of school work, plus the endless housework, plus the needs of my family, plus my own hopes for writing and art… (let’s not mention the projects/ides I’m trying to work on right now)

I’m not in a good mood about it.

How do you find time for your goals, your creative life? What do you sacrifice for it? How do you maintain the energy you need?

And if you know of any good deals on straightjackets, let me know.