Routine Log #1

Things seem to be improving, here. For one thing, I can actually think about taking a job again in the short-term…though I believe my preference would still angle toward Remote work. Commuting is just not attractive for someone in my current position, especially if I can’t use Mass Transit. I’ve also signed up for a number of classes for Fall Semester, in Accounting and Business. This may have a secondary effect of enabling me to work in Acquisitions in Technical Services, but that’s not why I’m taking the courses.

I don’t mind Data Entry, and I may find that I don’t mind Accounting. If I liked it, I could be a Bookkeeper or Accountant as a day job, which would keep me away from the general public, and contribute to my Business knowledge at the same time.

As well: if I’m going to start up a Small Business, I want to do it right, even though learning how to do so will take up a huge chunk of time for about four months. I want to get as much information as I can with as little direct exposure to other people as possible. We project that Fall classes will still be presented online. Spring Semester’s classes haven’t been announced, yet. However…by Winter, I will have essentially accumulated enough training to be above the waterline where it comes to running a Small Business (even if I don’t have the degree: I really don’t need an introduction to MS Office).

Probably, this is something I should have done back in 2016, but I didn’t have the focus or experience to know what I’d be doing, even if I weren’t being paid for it. And what I might not want to handle, even if I were. Those are two very good things to know. It’s also good to be able to acknowledge capability as versus willingness.

I’ve got the basic outline of a Business Plan down, now, minus the cash flow analysis and introduction…though there is another book I should also consult, which gives additional sections of the Business Plan to fulfill.

I can tell that I’ll need to tweak my initial ideas around how much I’ll be able to (and want to) produce, and setting a profit margin over my, “salary.” Right now…with my trial numbers and using piecework wages, I’m at approximately 19 hours/week, making a little less than I did at top rank at my first job (which had about the same hours), considering taxes. That’s not great, considering that my first job could in no way functionally support even the full living expenses of one adult person. These are just trial numbers, however…and if I were working on my own, doing something I love, there’s no reason I wouldn’t be able to increase my output — I (presently) have the time; I presume I would have the cash flow. (The question is whether I would continue to love doing it.)

There’s also the point that I haven’t factored in designs which take much less time and effort to produce, than my more unique creations. And the point of whether I would be willing to lower my standard of living, to work at this full-time. Or whether I could make things more quickly than I expect to be able to…which seems reasonable, given that I’ve been designing a lot of this on my own, and design is an iterative process that incorporates time spent learning.

The next step is really to try and remake some of my more successful trials, and see how long it takes me to produce them, when I already know what I’m doing. For example, with the Bee earrings — it took about 2.5 to 3 hours to produce a pair when I was still working out the pattern. However, now I know the pattern, and I know what slows me down. I can work my design out to be more efficient, while also possibly being more durable.

As for other things to do…I still have one really long invoice to enter into my spreadsheets. It’s…not going to be fun. When it’s small and manageable, that’s different; but these items are primarily identified by SKUs (Stock Keeping Units), and so it’s kind of hard to read the printout. Not to mention, it’s kind of hard to tell if you actually got everything you ordered (which I did not). Identifying the SKU may be necessary to make sure I actually get the correct part when reordering, as well (there are very subtle differences, say in size or cut, between different SKUs): so…yeah, not fun.

It is actually within my grasp to be able to take up some of the tasks which people in general find tedious…I’m thinking here of Bookkeeping and Accounting. I do have the attention to detail necessary, and the attraction to basic applied Math.

Anyhow — I’m told not to make any plans before having taken the classes.

I also…maybe should experiment and see how much I’ll need to do to make a living wage…I mean, just plug in the numbers and work backwards. Of course, cost of living differs tremendously depending on what part of the country one is in. It’s not necessary for me to live here and do this work, that is…but there are very real considerations I have to take as regards local culture and politics, which may translate in reality to livability.

Right now, I should probably either go and exercise, or go and clean off the Craft Table so I can do some work. Then I can get to work on either the band I started a couple of days ago, or the Bee earrings — while timing myself.

Looking back at my Bullet Journal, I can see what I had planned to do before getting thrown off-track… about two weeks ago. Seems as good a place as any to start up, again.

Published by Haruna

Haruna is a Librarian by training, currently pivoting from Public Services into Technical Services. Their undergraduate major was English -- Creative Writing, and they hold an additional small degree in Art (i.e. Visual Arts). Currently, they are trying to figure out whether to place their energies more into language and language arts, or producing handcrafted jewelry, for the interim...

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