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If Not This, What?

June 27, 2002

The final topic for the June Journal SMACKdown is “What would you be doing if you didn’t have your current career?”

Most likely I would be doing my former career, accounting, provided I hadn’t burned out yet, which is definitely where I was headed when I left the field. Though it wasn’t the accounting itself that burned me out, it was the big company environment. So maybe I’d be doing accounting at a small company, if I could find one that would hire a big firm dropout.

In my fantasy life, I’d be a full time quilter. No, scratch that, I’d be full time quilt designer. I’d have a staff to do the rest of the steps: ironing the fabric, cutting the pieces, sewing the pieces together, basting the layers, quilting, and binding. I could focus on planning the designs and playing with the pieces on my felt wall, indulging in my favorite parts of the process. Maybe I’d write a quilting book. In theory, I could write a quilting book now, but it’d have a better chance of getting it published and sold if I were a well-known quilter, which I’d have to be to have a staff to do my work for me.

As a full time quilt designer, I would take more trips like the one I’m on now, visiting a quilt show and loading up on fabric at the vendor malls and area quilt shops. Maybe I’d design my own fabric line and go to quilt shows as a vendor. Maybe I’d be teaching or lecturing at quilt shows, too. I haven’t quite figured out how I’d make money doing this, since I don’t think the income generated from quilt sales, even supplemented with book royalties and teaching fees, would cover my fabric and staff expenses, but hey, it’s a fantasy life—I don’t have to be a practical accountant in my fantasy life.

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