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Focusing

A Trucker Who Writes

Back in the early days of contemplating a career change, I wanted to hit the road in whatever capacity I could, and since I had been writing about my travels for a year and a half, and with a healthy stockpile of future topics, I knew writing would be  a part of my new endeavor.  After speaking with my level-headed friend (the universe put a quarter in the jukebox), he immediately recognized the importance writing would play in my new profession.  When I decided to take my words over the road, I knew writing would take a back seat to my driving and I planned my writing time accordingly.  I will be a truck driver first keeping my focus on the road ahead of me, the traffic around me, and the timeline necessary to deliver a secure load of goods in a timely fashion; writing would take place around those priorities.

Recently I enjoyed lunch with new friends – people who did not know me when they awoke that day – and when they inquired as to my profession, I told them I am a truck driver.  Of course, I have yet to drive a truck on my own, but my payroll indicates that I am indeed employed by the trucking industry, but when asked, my gut response advises others that hauling freight is my career.  So I ask myself, am I a driver who writes or a writer who drives?  Do I describe myself in terms of the work that is financially compensated or the work that I love?

A Writer Who Drives A Truck

Not knowing what to expect about life over the road, I surmised that in the day-to-day routine of life driving would need to be my first-string career and writing would be my recreational diversion when time allowed.  In any given week, I may have a busy Tuesday and a quiet Thursday, followed by a week with a hectic Monday and a lazy Wednesday – none of which I would be able to predict.  I identified a defined block of time by each day of the week so when I had a break from my primary career, I could dabble in my true passion, but with a specific daily goal to make the most of my off-duty hours.

The plan I designed remains consistent even when my free time flounders, especially since my mind occasionally meanders to other thoughts causing my prolificity to wane; embracing a more structured regimen keeps my writing skills sharp and focused.  More importantly, I am happy to spend time each day in creative thought.  I sleep soundly (save for the occasional inconsiderate roommate and her desire to heat brussel sprouts at o-dark thirty in a confined space) when I allow my brain to compose thoughts on virtual paper and I value every moment spent in composition and every word that appears on the computer screen.  When the demands of the road reduce the duration of my writing time, the joy of my creative craft will still occupy a more coveted place in my heart that coupling and uncoupling.  After all, I am a writer who happens to drive a truck.

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About Pam Portland

For a decade and a half I worked behind a series of desks, peeking out from around my computer monitor. Seeing the United States in bits and pieces wasn't enough to satisfy me, so I am grabbing my virtual pen and taking flight. Welcome along!

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