It’s been a whirlwind of a summer. A week spent in a ghetto college town taking AP Lit. re-certification courses, then two magical, unforgettable weeks in Germany, Austria, and France! I returned home feeling much more worldly (and a lot jet-lagged) thinking, “Ok, at least I have a month of my normal summer routine”. This means time to work on writing a new novel, editing the current one, searching out new marketing strategies (Lord knows I need them).
–By the way, I’m currently waiting for the Awesome Indies association to review “Tomorrow”. If I get their seal of excellence, it will be the greatest thrill (and some much needed reassurance). If not, I get great writing/editing advice from legit. authorities on the subject and a chance to re-submit for their seal of excellence; sounds like a win/win to me!-
Anyhoo, yesterday, as I was about 3K into novel #5, something told me that I should email my administrator and double check that my class schedule is not changing when the new school year starts. My Department Chair has always known the schedules in May or June, before the previous year ends. But this year she only knew that my AP Lit. classes were a sure thing for the next year. I didn’t think anything of it at the time; I mean, if it were a major change, they would have told me, right? I thought, maybe 12th Gen or Co-taught this year instead of College Prep. For the past three years I’ve taught seniors exclusively. I’ve taught the entire gamut of senior classes, from AP Lit right down to co-taught Remedial.
Well, I sent the email and got my answer. This year…three sections of AP, two sections of Sophomore English!
This came as a shock to me. Apparently, the 2016 senior class is small, the sophomore class is big; too big for the two teachers who currently teach 10th graders.
So I’m finding this out with two and half brief weeks before the school year starts.
Thankfully, I taught 10th grade when I first began my career. That was years ago though, and my units are severely outdated. So…that means a swift goodbye to the new novel. It means “A Different Path” will get edited when it gets edited, but that’s not going to be any time soon. Oh, and it means the 600-page novel that I’m supposed to be prepared to discuss with one of my Goodreads book clubs is now weighing on me like an anvil; another stressful chore which-by the way- is due in four short days!
I am NOT a put-it-off-til-the-last-minute person. In fact, nothing will send me into a panic attack quicker. It’s been killing me having two short weeks after returning home to read a six-hundred page book ( what the hell was I thinking)! And now I have six entire novel units to prepare for the upcoming year that I didn’t see coming at all.
But…I’m focusing on the positive. I’m scavenging from my past experience, toning down things I’ve done with 12th graders, trying to remind myself what 10th graders won’t know yet. It will be fine. On a sick level, I’m actually kind of excited to be doing something different, as well as keeping my precious AP Lit classes.
I know, I know…if only everyone had such terrible problems, right? I’m thinking, at least I have a freaking job. And one that I really do enjoy. But, it’s just that I’m saying a sad farewell to the next two and a half weeks that I wanted in front of my computer screen, in my office surrounded by books and souvenirs collected from my travels, and soothing music streaming on the cloud, writing my next novel and enjoying the few precious weeks that I don’t have to be in “teacher mode”.
I’m sad, but I’m buckling down to my nine months (or more)job; come early this year.