My official title at Deseret Book is bookseller.
I work between 25 and 30 hours a week, and throughout my shifts I do everything from dusting to stocking to involved customer service. A year and a half ago when I graduated with vast editorial aspirations you wouldn't have found me even thinking about working retail. Is that too diva? Maybe it's just that infectious college grad carpe diem.
Let's get real, being a bookseller is something that comes very naturally to me simply because I can talk books indefinitely. Sometimes, though, I wish I were on that other side of bookselling, the side with the deadlines and proofs and manuscript piles.
And here's where this indulgent post-degree monologue takes a turn: I'm okay with all of this.
I was talking to my mom this week and answered some question about work. Then she said, "Charlotte, you seem so much happier than you were a few months ago." And it's true. Contrasting my downtown Portland life with my Lake Oswego retail life, I can't believe how unsatisfied and stifled I was before. I'm so much happier now, and it shows. I'm less stressed and less anxious, more motivated and more purposeful.
So my professional life didn't take me where I thought it would. And I'm content right now in my role as bookseller. That doesn't mean that writing and editing aren't important to me, because they are important--very important. I fit them in where they're supposed to fit, which right now is a freelance gig here and there.
I can't tell you exactly why being a bookseller is working for me right now, but it is. And I'm happy.