When I think back to elementary school, I think about the sixth grade. We did presentations on ‘what you want to be when you grew up.’ I bought my bristol board and drew a desk and a chair, computer and papers because I wanted to be a writer. My teacher at the time asked me during the presentation what I would want to be if I wasn’t a writer, because it was a particularly difficult field to get into. I was stumped. I couldn’t think of a single other thing I wanted to be.
Flash forward to present day, I am 27 years old and am currently working on contract in broadcast television in an administrative role. I’ve worked for this company for almost 4 years, from contract to contract and department to department.
After University, when I graduated with a combined honours degree in English and Communications – I began to realize fairly quickly just how difficult it to get a job in writing (and/or editing) without any job experience. This is the employment paradox: all employers want experience, but you can’t get any experience if someone doesn’t hire you. I’m sure everyone has experienced this in their professional life at one point or another.
After graduation, I went to college for a post secondary degree in media. I figured, if I couldn’t write novels I could write for some form of media, any kind really – and I’ve always loved television and film. I started to develop an interest in editing movie trailers. After graduation (again), I took an entry level job at my current corporation on contract. 4 years and 4 contracts later, I still haven’t found a permanent job and more importantly, a job that I am passionate about.
I think about it often, it keeps me up at night at times. First of all, how do you plan your life/future/savings/kids/vacations, etc. without knowing if you’ll have a job in a few months? There was a brief time I had a full time role, and I was elated. Sure, it wasn’t 100% what I’d always wanted, but it was the most interesting and fun so far. Until they decided to restructure the role, and I was suddenly without a job. Luckily, with so much contract experience in so many departments, I was extremely fortunate to find something temporary quickly. But what’s next? I honestly have no idea, it depends on so many factors.
But I realized at about 5 o’clock this morning while half asleep that I may never be a movie trailer editor and maybe I’ll never have published writing (although, I do still hope I will). But I can start this blog and keep writing because I never want to stop.