Overall, it's been pretty stressful, and not nearly as rewarding as I'd hoped. And I earned craptacular pay for it, too, a reality which makes it highly unlikely I will ever do such a thing again--ever.
I soon start two more classes, also online, but with a completely different college. I am not sure, but I believe they will turn out well (especially in comparison). I'm prepping for those right now, and also madly grading for the other two courses, so I still may be in here sporadically for a few weeks, at least until the stress classes are over.
Have you ever noticed how the things you most love often come with corresponding thing you hate? For instance, I love teaching writing. I love teaching it almost as much as I love doing it. But I hate grading. Yup, detest it. I hate seeing a paper as "over," or "finished," and assigning a grade to it, like the student has no hope of ever doing better. Unfortunately, even with some modifications I've made to the paper-grading process, the grade must eventually be assigned. And I loath that part, and likely always will (unless I become some sort of maniacal old blue-haired English teacher who resents her students and loves giving F's).
It's the same with writing. I love to write. I love the whole process of it--writing down random ideas, outlining, planning, writing scenes, scrapping whole chapters, revising, adding details--but I absolutely detest sending my stuff off to publishers/contests/agents, etc. I cringe with every stamp I lick, shake my head as I write the SASE, fold it carefully, and take the whole mess to the post office.
I suppose I'd be happier if I loved these parts, but I also wouldn't be me. It's the sensitive, creative side of me that hates these things, the part that says nothing should ever be finished, that we are always growing, and F's and rejection slips do nothing but stifle that growth. Then again, fear of F's and rejection slips may spur us on to work harder, try more, and revise again and again.
Perhaps they aren't so bad after all. What do you think?