Shopping for a Home

house1So now I have to find a house. I’ve been living with and caring for my mother for four years and each year they increase the rent. In January, a letter will arrive announcing the increase in rent and asking us to decide if we want to sign a new lease or move on. Moving on is not so simple with an eighty-three year old who is ill. That’s why we’ve stayed the last four years, in spite of the annual increase in rent. I guess they (that infernal, nebulous ‘they’) are trying to improve the housing market by making it cheaper to pay a mortgage, then it is to rent an apartment. Hence, I am looking to purchase a home.

This entire exercise is completely outside of my comfort zone. I’ve never owned a home or even thought of owning one before. Ever since I was five (and that was a long time ago-just take my word for it), I’ve been moving. At that time, the average cost of a small house was just under $5,000. And if you wanted to splurge, you could find a six room ranch home in Pennsylvania for $12,900. Now, I’ll be lucky to find a decent home less than $200,000. Last year, when they raised the rent I foresaw my present predicament. I knew they would just keep doing this and that it would be beyond our means to stay.

My demons weren't this cute
My demons weren’t this cute

This gave me motivation to finally write that book. You know, the one that everyone wishes they could write. But honestly, it has been my secret desire to become an Author since my mother read the Chronicles of Narnia to me at five months’ gestation. A desire confirmed by my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Possis, who insisted my poems were inspired. When I finally read the Chronicles on my own, I wished I could properly thank C.S. Lewis for the countless hours of magic that the Wardrobe gave me. What better way to return the favor then to give some magic back to young readers. I shoved my ‘you can’t do it’ demons in an empty shoebox under the bed (I wanted to put them down the garbage disposal, but years of attachment wouldn’t let me chuck them altogether) and tied myself to my desk chair.

image3356Countless hours and an expanded buttocks later, I finished my book. I took an online class to learn how to publish it and put it up on Smashwords and Amazon, both.  I felt so accomplished. I really did it! But as I skipped over the top of that daunting ‘write a book’ hill, I came face to face with a sheer ‘market the book’ cliff. The consequent mutiny of the demons under my bed finished me off. I don’t know what I was thinking. How could I be so delusional? I had this naïve idea that suddenly people would start buying my book and I would be able to afford that home. What’s a few dollars for a well-written book? I mean people pay more for a Starbuck’s coffee every day. Well…I plan to learn more about marketing. But first I have to round up those demons. I’ll need a bigger box…and a padlock or superglue…

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