Tuesday, January 21, 2020

What does the life of a self-employed musician look like?

I like my Planner Pad. Not perfect for me, but
the best I've found for balancing jobs.

Many of you have asked me what I do all day, so this little blog is to give you a li'l' insight into the life of a self-employed artist who also solo parents 4-5 days a week with ADHD and who lies somewhere on the sphere (i say sphere, not spectrum):


Today, between 7a-12p: 

7:00  Wake up! This is not typical. I'm usually up much earlier because my kids hate to sleep, but my kiddos were shockingly good this morning. It’s a crapshoot, which makes this whole thing called “morning routine,” very challenging. I’ve been sleep deprived for, like, eight years. But even when I wake up at 5 am, it’s not like I get anything business-related done. That’s usually the time of day when I’m grumpy, underslept and I manic tweet from the toilet, which I suppose counts as doing my on-brand social media posting.

7:01-8:30 Get my kids dressed, fed, cleansed. Read books to them. Mitigate arguments. Have coffee. Try not to be angry at the little ones. Get Graham to bus stop and Angus to preschool.

8:45 Home. Make a cup of decaf. I’d like to switch over to tea, but locating my electric kettle and my good tea is difficult, as we are still living out of boxes. It’s been eight months of this. Yes, it’s making me feel crazy.

8:50  Pay two medical bills with my Amex so I’ll get Delta points. Tweet about paying medical bills with my Amex.

8:55-9:30  Go through accounting for 2019. File and pay my 2019 Sales and Use tax forms online. I owed $33 because that’s how much sales taxable stuff I sold, and 95% of those sales were tickets. The other owed was for a t-shirt. The other tax was on free CDs I gave away, but which I’m still supposed to pay use tax for.  Today I also had to pay $20 extra to file official change of address forms. SO INTERESTING! Good thing I took IB Calculus,

9:30 Frantically text Steve Cooley asking about 1099s.

10:00 Email accountant to see if she wants to do my 1099s. Realize that by the time I got all the information to her, I could have just filed them all myself. She knows I have all my ducks in a row and would probably prefer me just do it rather than bother her with an email. I probably should Venmo her $5 for a latter because I just wasted her time with an email.

10:05 Do more maths, adding up my contract labor (basically, people in my band whom I paid to play with me in 2019 and try to remember which box their W9s are in).

10:30 Cry because I miss my mom during tax season.


10:45   Post video and write a little paragraph microblog about that song and my mom and taxes and then cry again. 

10:50  Go back and add PATREON link because, having just paid my taxes, I realize that I really need to work on the subcriber/patron business template if I want to continue making art for the world.

10:55  Feel guilty about self-promoting my Patreon page. Check my blog stats and notice that my blog has had 5764 page views in the last 3 weeks, so clearly some of you out there actually enjoy my art/content/writing? But only 54 of you subscribe to my Patreon, so how can I work on converting readers to supporters?

11:00  Decide that little Carole King video wasn’t enough actual practice, so I play 10 minutes of Beethoven with a metronome.

11:15  Create meal plan for the week (i just pulled up an old one) and make a Kroger Clicklist to pick up later today.

11:30  Go to the post office to mail 5 photographs to Patreons who joined during my special offer. (Full disclosure: i was panicking about going to the post office, and David is home this week so he went for me!!!)

11:45 Email venue and production staff about Saturday’s Burns Night Show, choosing the appetizer menu and writing out the budget. Guess what? We’re probably gonna each earn about $100 before taxes. Which makes me realize, thought I LOVE playing these kinds of original music, fun variety shows, I need to … 1) work more on my Patreon content and 2) follow up with my event planner friends to book private events.

12:00 Write this blog.

12:45 time to pick Angus up from school!

I’m going to try to step away from work for a while, on orders of my therapist. I’m also desperate to write, both prose and music, but apparently I'm supposed to try to exercise because it, like, releases endorphins and makes me happier and stuff. Harumph.


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