How I Ended Up Traveling The U.S. Getting Paid To Draw, Write & Teach: Part 4

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Part 4. Risking the Day Job July 2008 - Back in Los Angeles

I wasn’t sure how to approach my boss and tell him I’d be gone for one week a month starting next month. It was a lot to ask, and I was prepared to quit if he said no. I didn’t want to give up my day job because it made me feel like a useful member of society. Also, it meant I was a working artist - if Matte Extensions can be called art, and my payscale could be called working.

It took a night of turning over approaches, but I figured it out.

I went to him and said, “Hey I’ve got a lot of loans to pay off.” I paused, watching his face get worried, anticipating what I was about to ask for. Was this me quitting? Or worse - asking for a raise?

“The amount I’m currently getting paid just isn’t enough to sustain me and get me out of the hole.” I paused again watching his reaction contort further in a subtle way that tried to be unreadable.

“I wanted to ask for one week off a month to work at a separate job so I can get out of debt.” His face relaxed.

“I’ll do what’s needed to do the four weeks worth of work in the time when I am here. If that means weekends. Nights. You name it. And I’ll always give you months warning of when I won’t be available. Is that all right?”

He agreed, and I realized how it’s risky conversations like this that make me feel alive. With that out of the way, I still had a month before my first gig, and that was a far scarier prospect.

job juggling
job juggling

(Google image search for juggling jobs = amazing)

Next Week: Part 5. My First Day Teaching

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