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Scott's Column
Status Update

December 2, 2016
By Scott Lewis

It has been a while since I updated this site. I thought I would take this opportunity to tell you what has been happening the last few months, and bring you up to speed.

It has been a while since I put up an article here. Sorry about that. A lot has happened in the last few months. I thought I would take this opportunity to bring you all up to speed... and decide if it is worth keeping this site.

Back in June I bought a house. This came as a bigger surprise to me than to you. My ex-wife (who was not my ex-wife yet) and I sold the house we had built. This was driven by my youngest son moving in with me, which dictated the stopping of child support payments. I was living in a one bedroom apartment, and this drove me to getting a 3 bedroom apartment. She moved in with family.

Then around February she was looking for a house. Texas being a community property state meant that my name would have to be on her mortgage (or fill out special paperwork to prevent that). So that drove use to finally get a divorce (after 6 years separation). The divorce was final at the end of April.

She emailed me a link to a house. I assume she wanted my opinion. It was more than she could afford and she thought I would be interested. I was... then started looking into houses. As stated above, I did indeed find a house and moved in the first weekend of June 2016.

Prior to looking for a house I was seriously looking for a classic car. I even wrote about that on this site, and the ease with which you can get a loan for a classic car. unfortunately, the money I had saved for the down payment went into the house and then towards travel.

I took 5 trips during 2016. In February I went to Tennessee for a wedding. That was a fairly isolated incident. Then... plans started piling up. The first weekend of August I went to New York because my best friend invited me to go to a Paul McCartney concert. Then the first week of September I went back to NY to take the same friend to the 50th Anniversary Star Trek convention in NYC (a surprise visit to him). The second weekend of September I took my son to Malibu California for a camp with the band 30 Seconds to Mars. Finally, during the first weekend of October I went to New Orleans and the Poconos in one long weekend.

Wow. My bank account is severely beaten up.

I also started dating someone in March. My girlfriend accompanied me on the Paul McCartney trip and the New Orleans/Pocono trip (her brother-in-law was celebrating his 50th in New Orleans, and my god-daughter was getting married in the Poconos on the same weekend).

So life is vastly different now compared to just a year before. 2016 is without a doubt the best year I have had since leaving my wife in 2010. I have someone I care a lot about, I have a new house and I have one of my sons living with me (I had two, but the older son moved back in with his mother because she bought a house 5 minutes from his college).

And I am broke... again. However, there is light at the end of the tunnel. The debt consolidation loan I took out years ago will be paid off in the Fall of 2017. So I should be able to finally get a handle on my finances. Time will tell on that one.

I am still doing my "automotive enthusiast" photography on the side. However, due to moving and travelling I have not been able to "get out there and "drum up" much business. And there in lies an issue. I have had the chance to talk with other photographers that are making a living at it. And it requires A LOT of work hustling to get jobs. One person told me it was about 10% photography and the rest trying to get work. I am NOT that type of person. Plus I have a full time job that I actually like (most of the time).

I may consider giving up on the photography as a source of income. I am negative $1,272 this year. Granted, I used my photography as a means to write off two of my trips. The trip to Tennessee I used to visit the National Corvette Museum in Kentucky where I was able to photograph a car right in the museum. I also repeated this in California while visiting the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. If I remove those two huge expenses I made about $2,246 for 2016.

BTW... here are the two museum cars I photographed:

  

Granted, I was not able to spend the time drumming up business. Now that I am in a relationship I am not sure how much time I want to spend doing that. I would prefer to spend my free time with my girlfriend, not going on photography shoots and trying to get clients.

That brings us to this Web Site. The last time I sent out a newsletter I discovered that my web site is seen as spam. When I email a link to my web site the email NEVER gets delivered. It also don't bounces back. As an experiment, I tried sending an email from my work to my Gmail account with a link to my site and it received an error for containing a spam link. I have no idea how this happens, nor do I know how to undo this.

Because of this I can only put out a Newsletter with no links. What's the point? I am reluctant to take down the site, but that is likely going to happen. Maybe I can get a new domain name and move it to that. That would be a pain, but would be minimal of a cost problem.

I just don't have a solution present in mind at this point. But if the situation does not change by the time I have to renew the domain name... I will shut it down.

Conclusion

There you have it. If any of you have been wondering where I have been, now you know.

Hey... I gave you 3 articles this month. Hopefully you enjoyed them. I would love to keep this site up with updates next year as I search for a car (classic or otherwise), and decide what to do with my photography... which is itching to buy a new camera.

This site will be up for a at least a few months, but I don't know if it will make it to next year.

TTFN!

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