Ogunquit Maine – Photo by Dan Steven Erickson

I used to call my old website,, “Life.” Because that’s all I really know. Sure, I can make music, I can write songs, take photos, and write poetry and books. But it’s all still a part of life. My life.

I’m a teacher by training. But I’ve worked in the fields picking raspberries. I’ve worked in restaurants and minimarts. I’ve been a deejay on the radio. I’ve done retail. Now life might have a new kind of employment for me: mail carrier.

If you follow my journey, you know that I moved from Washington to Maine in the fall of 2022. The move was to help to get my daughter away from some bad circumstances and people. Honestly, I also had been desiring a change. I chose Maine because I lived here as a kid, and it’s got some of the lowest crime rates in the entire United States.

But with the move came sacrifice. I knew that I’d have to give up my full-time teaching career at Yakima Valley College. That time has come. Beginning in September, I will move to teaching part-time remote with benefits status. That’s actually more than I might have hoped for. I’m grateful and willl continue that work as long as I can. I enjoy teaching.

A New Chapter Is Being Written

Since moving to Maine, I have done part-time teaching at the University of New Hampshire and Southern Maine Community College. I have also worked part time at Cabela’s. It’s been difficult to find any kind of full-time teaching work in New England. The positions just don’t come up. So, I started applying for a variety of other work including academic advising and the USPS.

I still have about 20 applications active in the academic advising world in a variety of places, primarily in the Northeast and the Midwest. But today, I was officially hired and assigned a training date for the USPS.

I don’t know how I’ll like working as a mail carrier. Heck, I could still get an offer for an academic advising position before I even start. I do know that I like to walk. I like to work in some solitude. I’m not sure I’ll love the hours or certain weather conditions, but I’ll give it my best.

What Does this Mean for My Creative Ventures?

That’s a good question that I honestly don’t know the answer to at this point in time. The USPS is known as a job that can take up to 60 hours a week of one’s time. Plus, I’ll continue my part-time online teaching. It will be good for my finances, but it might take a chunk out of my creativity time.

I don’t plan on ever stopping being creative. I can’t. It’s part of who I am. But I will likely have to limit what I do to be much more focused on a single project at a time instead of doing several at once.

My immediate thought is poetry. Why? Because poetry is a short form of writing that can be done on a daily basis without taking up large chunks of time.

Second, might be experimental/ambient music, because it can also be done fairly quickly. Songwriting and book writing are both a bit more time consuming. But I won’t count anything out. Who knows, there’s also photography as a possible option. I’ve been considering getting a nice camera for some time.

Life and Balance

Bottom line is simple. I have to balance things out. I turn 61 this week. Part of me wanted to stay semi-retired for a few years and then retire fully at 65. But I know I’d have to slowly live off of my savings to make that work. So, I took the USPS gig. We’ll see what happens. And if that doesn’t work out, something else will. It’s life. – dse

  • Learn more about creativity
  • Get new Anderhill music first
  • Get special discounts
  • Sign up for the newsletter

Author: Dan Steven Erickson

Dan Steven Erickson is a great undiscovered American songwriter.