PDA

View Full Version : If it's not too personal....



Serious Desi
10-27-2009, 10:31 AM
What's your job besides writing?

Are you a full time writer?
Teacher?
Mother/ Father?
Part time waitress/ waiter?
Lawyer?
Nanny?
Are you Bill Gates?

I'm roving around the internet trying to discover what I can do that's more stable than writing, Plan B.
I really want to write, but I'm not sure if I want to spend my soul in loans for a creative writing class.

And when you first started out what were your goals, ambitions, expectations?
And if you did, what did you major in? How did you get where you are now?

willietheshakes
10-27-2009, 10:38 AM
I'm a lifelong bookseller and promiscuous reviewer, a negligent father and piss-poor husband.

I majored in English -- I started off in Creative Writing, but didn't have a taste for it.

Terie
10-27-2009, 11:40 AM
Technical writer. Fell into it while still working on my degree (going to school at night while working full-time at a bank). Good money for writing if you can find it, but these days, they're shipping the jobs overseas (because, when you're struggling to make something work, what you really want is instructions written by someone with no grasp of English grammar, isn't it?) and the few left hiring are looking for either experience or academic qualifications in technical communication. But still, corporate writing is a good place to look; you don't know what you'll find until you try.

Linda Adams
10-27-2009, 01:50 PM
Are you a full time writer?

No. I do PowerPoint presentations and audio visual support.


And when you first started out what were your goals, ambitions, expectations?

I wanted to write full time. But I didn't realize it at the time, but I wanted to write novels. I didn't realize that all writing isn't quite the same. A relative went practical on me and suggested screenplays, so I wrote a ton of screenplays, none of which got accepted. I ended up burning myself out for two years. Once I came back, I continued to write in all different areas. As a result, my writing credits are so all over the map I can't even use them in query letters.



And if you did, what did you major in? How did you get where you are now?

I majored in accounting (numbers are so not for me), threatre, journalism, and broadcast journalism, ending up with a major in general ed. I've only had two creative writing classess--one in high school, and one in college. The one in college was worthless. Then I joined the army, which is truly how I got where I am. They were prepared to offer me a journalism job, and I turned it down. I couldn't explain why at the time, but I know know I would have hated it.

ejaycee
10-27-2009, 02:04 PM
I'm only 15, so I haven't majored in anything. But I am a web designer/developer, I'm studying art and music and I go to a writer's group every wednesday, with the additions of various other interests.
I can do all this because I'm home-schooled. :)

kaitie
10-27-2009, 02:11 PM
I'm currently a teacher, though I have a master's degree in psychology and probably won't be able to continue teaching when I get back to America because of it. Goodness knows what I'll do then. :P

I love my job, though, in part because it allows me time to write. I've been doing this so long that my lessons are all planned out in advance and I have to put very little time into preparation. That means I've got at least a couple of hours every day that I can write.

I might be way off on this, btw, but I wouldn't recommend majoring in creative writing to be a writer. Major in something else and take a class or two. Personally, I was never fond of them to begin with. That's probably because I'm not someone who likes to follow "rules" when it comes to writing, and in a class setting, often everything is judged by the rules you're placed under. I just don't like constrictions. On the other hand, I picked up a few good things, and workshops are fantastic.

Majoring in something else will not only give you something to fall back on, but also give you experience in other fields and areas, which will round out your writing.

trocadero
10-27-2009, 02:11 PM
Teacher. Started Law - hated it. Completed a three year program in Performing Arts. finished an Arts Degree in Media and French. Teaching Graduate program. Started psych - hated it. Fell into teaching middle school - love it but would rather be writing full time. I didn't really start writing til my youngest was about 2.

Wayne K
10-27-2009, 02:16 PM
I've done so many things that I have no idea what I am. I drove a New York City taxicab on and off for 20 years, but that was always between jobs. I worked in bars and clubs when I was young, then I worked supervising frieght at the convention center for a while. My last job was painting houses. I'm real good at it, but I can't do it anymore because of a back injury.

All I do now is write. So money or not, that's what I am.

KTC
10-27-2009, 02:23 PM
I'm the one who puts the red stripes on the candy canes. I always wanted to make the world a better place. Red stripes certainly help me to fulfill that goal.

Thump
10-27-2009, 02:27 PM
I did a B.A. in English studies to both better my grasp of English and because I wanted to work in publishing. I completed a Master's degree in Publishing in September and now I'm temping at Reed Elsevier to get experience and hopefully a foot in the door. I'm in England, btw, but you can find publishing courses in the US too, I almost went to NYU actually. It's a very competitive business, hard to break into and doesn't pay very well but being a writer too helps.
It might kill your soul a little though :D

But I'm enjoying the work and I find that it's given me a much better idea of how to write something that might sell just because I had a chance to look at the slush pile at a big children's publisher as well as read their requested manuscripts (heh, I actually had the power to decline on a manuscript even though I was just an intern, they trusted me because of my degrees, education is good for you!).

Wiskel
10-27-2009, 02:41 PM
I'm a child and adolescent psychiatrist.

My energies since GCSEs have all gone into scientific subjects and my medical training. I've no qualifications relevant to writing beyond GCSE english and english lit (20 years ago now), but I have a job where I meet lots of people and a lot of experience of trying to sort out their problems.

I've a pretty busy job that includes clinical work and management, and work 9-5 plus some evenings and weekends covering emergencies.

My hobbies are about as far away from my job as possible so I'm lucky to be able to say that thinking about stories and writing don't feel like work. The downside is that because writing is a hobby it doesn't get the time I'd like to spend on it.

Freelancer
10-27-2009, 03:27 PM
Full time writer / graphic artist. On this week, I'm running in writer mode, but it's mostly depending on my mood and the requests.

TrixieLox
10-27-2009, 03:33 PM
Full-time journalist / web editor. Have always wanted to write so my whole career path has been dictated by this desire. I basically get to interview people, go to events, write and sub articles alllll day long (then write some more in the evenings when working on my novels)...

Pepper
10-27-2009, 03:41 PM
I'm roving around the internet trying to discover what I can do that's more stable than writing, Plan B.

My personal advice is to do whatever it is that you think you can handle. Don't think that you have to spend 4+ years in uni for a "Plan B" job. I used to work in a cake shop (kitchen duties only- I made the cakes) and still long for it now, years after I left. It was average pay, but it was a stable wage and a stable job. I went to work knowing exactly what was expected of me for each shift and there was never a shortage of work to do. Best of all, it didn't ignite the creative juices whatsoever, so when I got home from work, all I wanted to do was WRITE.

Find a job that you're comfortable with. Of course it should also give you enough money to live off. If you're truly passionate about writing, don't believe that you can find a "Plan B" job that is equally fulfilling. Work so you can write.

My humble (drunk, tired and rambling) opinion. :D

gothicangel
10-27-2009, 04:02 PM
Full time Scottish Lit student and part time waitress.

Calla Lily
10-27-2009, 04:27 PM
HIV research, the forms and data side.

In the past, I've been a nun, an English teacher, a typesetter, a Direct Marketing copywriter, and various versions of CS rep/inside sales/retail.

scarletpeaches
10-27-2009, 04:33 PM
I'm a cryptozoologist.

YAwriter72
10-27-2009, 04:34 PM
Business and Marketing Manager for a trade publication.

My degree is in Business Administration and I did full charge bookkeeping for 12 years first. I love my job and plan to keep working where I am even if I get a 6 figure advance (Ok Ok, I'm up off the floor now, LOL) My benefit package is amazing and not one I could give up. I'm the primary breadwinner and the hubs works P/T.

Never had planned to be a writer, but discovered I had a knack for it a year and a half ago.

Maryn
10-27-2009, 04:42 PM
I'm the last stay-home mom in North America. Odd, because the kids no longer live here. In the old days, I worked various office jobs, all of them beneath me. It's no small source of pride that at every single one, they hired two people to replace one me.

Maryn, making cookies and costumes today

Gemnyc
10-27-2009, 04:46 PM
Iím a real estate novelist (thank you Mr Billie Joel) spending time showing apartments in the city and writing on the subways and in parks between appointments. It is commission based, so I have to put the work in to make money, but it also affords me a flexible schedule if there is a conference I want to go to or Iím on a hot writing streak. I love my job, I meet lots of fun characters and get inspired but different parts of the city. I find that I need the job to get me out the house and amongst people - otherwise I would just write and be a hermit!

Previously, I worked in HR and have a degree in Psychology and Management. I did take a creative writing course at University, but it sucked the fun out. My teacher said my writing was too dramatic and she didnít like fantasy. So that put me off for ten years - but I always wanted to write, I just lost my confidence. Now I self teach by buying writing books, reading threads on AW and other internet sites. The fun is officially back.

CaroGirl
10-27-2009, 05:14 PM
I majored in English and journalism. And then I discovered you can't get a job with an English degree and my personality is tragically unsuited for journalism. So I fell into technical writing. It's good money when you can find work but it can be more boring than watching Monday night curling.

If I could win the lottery and write fiction full time, I would. But I guess to win the lottery you have to buy a ticket, so I guess I'm doomed in that regard.

MGraybosch
10-27-2009, 05:31 PM
What's your job besides writing?

I work as a programmer, specializing in databases. I got into computers because I knew I wouldn't be able to hack it as a professional musician, and I couldn't think of anything else I wanted to do for a living.

Red-Green
10-27-2009, 05:36 PM
I majored in English then got an MFA, and I knew all along I'd need a backup plan to be able to write. I opted for a series of fairly low-effort secretarial jobs. That's still what I do--I'm a secretary for an academic department at a university. The job only takes me about 20 hours a week to do, and I spend the other 20 hours writing. So, unwittingly, my employer pays me to write. :D

seun
10-27-2009, 05:36 PM
I work in the cataloguing and acquisitions department of a library. Which is nice.

icerose
10-27-2009, 05:45 PM
I'm a mother and a writer. Screenwriting specifically is where I've made all my money. I hope it continues and I also hope my novel side picks up soon. I have a book I need to edit badly, one that is out on submission, two that are WIP and the rest of my finished novels are trunk novels. They were the poor things that had to endure my steep learning phase.

firedrake
10-27-2009, 05:48 PM
I'm a Town Planner. Not a profession that was on my list. Got into it entirely by accident. Most of the time, I really enjoy it.

Would love to be a full time writer, but I don't think that's going to happen!

jennontheisland
10-27-2009, 05:52 PM
I'm an engineering student. I have a tech diploma in environmental science. I've worked in labs, for environmental remediation and consulting companies, at a sawmill, an engineering firm, and I've owned my own consulting company. I've also done admin work. Mindless, but seems to pay well.

I never planned on writing full time. Still don't. Not profitable enough. And I like a regular paycheque.

Jamesaritchie
10-27-2009, 07:37 PM
I, too, am a Journalism and English major, but only worked these professions for a very short period. I've been a full-time writer for a lot of years now, but I'm seriously considering doing something else for a few years. I'm getting older, and I'd like to try some new things before it's too late.

Don't know what I'll try. Could be anything from pro poker player to working on a charter boat a friend of mine owns.

Richard White
10-27-2009, 07:55 PM
Currently I'm a technical writer for a DOD contractor

In previous lives I've been a soldier (signals intelligence analyst, czech and arabic linguist, cryptanalyst, been cavalry and air assault, non-commissioned officer, instructor), a journalist (radio and print), a sales clerk, a fast-food line cook, worked in a gaming store, worked in a comics store, bucked hay bales, delivered flowers and worked telephone switchboard.

My degree is in History (emphasis on medieval/renaissance era) with a minor in Criminal Justice Administration. My original major was Journalism (emphasis on Broadcast), but that fell through. Since then, I've picked up a AA in English and hope to pursue a Masters in English or an MFA in Creative Writing, depending on who'll have me. *grin*

Mostly soldiering and tech writing though.

William Haskins
10-27-2009, 07:58 PM
writer/producer in the video game and film industries.

Gregg
10-27-2009, 07:58 PM
I'm a nearly retired Landscape Architect.

Cranky
10-27-2009, 08:04 PM
Full time mom and part-time student. Our plan is for me to remain at home (even after I get my degree), and keep plugging away at my writing. Mostly, though, so that someone is always available for the kids. Someone's always sick, the endless amount of time off from school, etc., makes the idea of me having another career just...silly. We'd have to pay quite a lot to find someone we trusted to watch our five year old, who is autistic. Plus the other kids, who are not old enough to be left home alone in any event either. That'd eat up most of my salary!

If I want to do something outside the home later, I'll probably stick with volunteer work. Much more flexible scheduling, and equally as fulfilling. :)

brainstorm77
10-27-2009, 08:06 PM
I'm a nurse.

MissAimee
10-27-2009, 08:15 PM
I am a History and education student. I wanted to write back in high school, but then quickly realized that there really wasn't any money in it till or if I got published. So I had find a job while finishing school.

Pomegranate
10-27-2009, 09:34 PM
Another technical writer here. I've also been a nanny, and an administrative assistant/office manager. I spent 5 years temping. The oddest temp job I had was as the emcee for a baby pageant.

Jess Haines
10-27-2009, 11:39 PM
Job #1 (day): technical writer and job #2 (nights/weekends): executive.

I write when I should be sleeping. :D

Topaz044
10-28-2009, 02:05 AM
Wow, everyone here has some pretty cool jobs! I'm an inventory control specialist at a retail store.

MGraybosch
10-28-2009, 02:07 AM
Wow, everyone here has some pretty cool jobs! I'm an inventory control specialist at a retail store.

Ha. My job isn't that cool. I'm basically Walter Mitty with better hair. :)

AnonymousWriter
10-28-2009, 02:11 AM
I'm a student.

And I'll probably never be a full-time writer.

The Lonely One
10-28-2009, 02:20 AM
.

What's your job besides writing? playing the lottery full time.

Are you a full time writer? when I'm not playing the lottery.
Teacher? nope.
Mother/ Father? not yet
Part time waitress/ waiter? not even close
Lawyer? heh.
Nanny? nope
Are you Bill Gates? tell the Fla. lotto to help me out. I just want money to buy myself time.

I'm roving around the internet trying to discover what I can do that's more stable than writing, Plan B.
I really want to write, but I'm not sure if I want to spend my soul in loans for a creative writing class.

And when you first started out what were your goals, ambitions, expectations?
And if you did, what did you major in? How did you get where you are now? I'm still in college, trying to finish an English BA (for me) and a lib. sciences MA (for money). My expectations are to live a comfortable life, not lavish, my ambitions are to write my hands off, and not ever return to journalism.

Brutal Mustang
10-28-2009, 02:21 AM
Machinist.

DWSTXS
10-28-2009, 02:25 AM
Full-time sales for a commercial diving company. People always give a funny look when I tell them I work for a commercial diving company, because, A. I can't swim and B. I live in Dallas, TX.

1. I don't do the diving, just the sales
2. we have divers that dive into Elevated water towers to do inspections and cleanings. Many people don't realize that those water towers often have divers going into them, just as many people don't realize how much crap gets into the water supplies, and needs to be cleaned out every year or so.

geardrops
10-28-2009, 02:28 AM
What's your job besides writing?

I don't know if writing is my job, seeing as I don't get paid... Guess that makes me a volunteer.

I'm a professional codemonkey.


And when you first started out what were your goals, ambitions, expectations?
And if you did, what did you major in? How did you get where you are now?

First started writing? My goals were to... write. Maybe publish. I'd like to get published but if it doesn't happen, fmeh.

I majored in computer engineering (EE/CS). I've been writing since I was 8, coding since I was 9, and I realized fairly quickly which one of these was likely to pay my rent.

charlotte49ers
10-28-2009, 02:28 AM
I'm a teacher and photographer.

Moost
10-28-2009, 02:34 AM
Combined BA/MA student in English education at a state school.

Started out as a history/pre-law major at a prestigious private school at Boston. Hated it :D

Blondchen
10-28-2009, 02:57 AM
I'm currently an admin assistant for an HR firm. I was a television producer and voice over artist before the market fell apart. I'm a trained opera singer and I perform with Cirque Berkzerk (http://www.cirqueberzerk.com).

Oh and I write. Occasionally.

Wordwrestler
10-28-2009, 02:58 AM
2. we have divers that dive into Elevated water towers to do inspections and cleanings. Many people don't realize that those water towers often have divers going into them, just as many people don't realize how much crap gets into the water supplies, and needs to be cleaned out every year or so.

Oh, barf! I'll never look at a water tower the same way again. Or that pitcher of tap water in my fridge.

Calla Lily
10-28-2009, 03:19 AM
Oh, barf! I'll never look at a water tower the same way again. Or that pitcher of tap water in my fridge.

Two words: Brita Filters. The taste difference is startling. Esp here in the summer when the zebra mussels proliferate like bunnies. (And I gagged a bit when I read that post too.)

DWSTXS
10-28-2009, 03:26 AM
Oh, barf! I'll never look at a water tower the same way again. Or that pitcher of tap water in my fridge.


I didn't mean real crap. I meant dirt. Inside the water tower, when it's being vaccuumed (sp?) out it looks like fine particles of dirt. When we finish, the water is just as clear as it can be, because it's not stirred up when it's cleaned. The divers wear suits that have been sprayed so as not to allow any contaminants into the water etc etc.

What's scary is how many cities pass on the mandatory yearly inspections, and just hope the TCEQ doesn't say anything to them. (Texas Commission Environmental Quality)
Some of the smaller cities get lazy, and just do a cursory visual examination. In other words, they open the hatch, look inside, and say, It looks okay to me. They do this to save $300-$500.

Then, every now and then you get the ones that have dead birds floating in them. Or worse, bird skeletons. (cause that means. . .)

timewaster
10-28-2009, 03:28 AM
I used to work for an oil company and then stayed at home and wrote while being a Mum. Now my kids are older, I do a bit of teaching creative writing at BA and MA level and I've just started a part time Phd. I usually write one or two novels a year.

highlyirritable
10-28-2009, 03:38 AM
I am a fulltime Mature (?) student at University undertaking an English BA. I want to be the one in the unemployment line clinging to my diploma, screeching, "BUT I HAVE A DEGREEEEEEE!"

MarkEsq
10-28-2009, 03:51 AM
Wow, this is a fascinating thread.

I am an assistant district attorney in Austin, Texas. I prosecute felonies (as opposed to misdemeanors).

I am a former newspaper reporter, ski instructor, and personal trainer.

And the thing I want to be most of all: a novelist. :)

Serious Desi
10-28-2009, 04:27 AM
So many interesting things ( I read all of them)...and a lot of teachers....I've thought about being the amazing art teacher who can actually draw and sells food out of her file cabinets.

That thing about the water towers....that's nasty/ scary.....dead birds ( if a vegetarian drinks water contaminated with dead birds are they still vegetarian?)

I've heard that Seattle has pretty nice water..........

Karen Junker
10-28-2009, 04:56 AM
I'm on a sabbatical from my full time job editing for a small romance epub. I critique full time. Sometimes, I even write!

In the past I have been a painter, social worker, real estate agent and massage therapist. I've also put on a writers' conference.

5bcarnies
10-28-2009, 05:10 AM
I got a degree in medical assisting and ended up becoming an emergency medical dispatcher. Who ya gonna call? ME!

The upside to my job is that when it is slow I have time to write. So not only is this the most fulfilling job I've ever had but it helps me to achieve my dream. Which is nice because I cannot write as much as I would like at home. Four kids. All girls. Ages ranging from preteen to preschool.

If by some chance I get an amazing book deal I wouldn't leave my job. Multiple streams of income. Plus, then I would feel like something was missing if I did. I like helping people too much. Sounds cheesey I know but its the truth.

White-Tean
10-28-2009, 05:31 AM
I'm a full-time student at the moment supported by my parents. I'm going to graduate before much longer though with a degree in design as an illustration major. Which means personally I'll be looking for a career in book design/illustration, although until I get enough freelance work or a position in the field I'll just apply for any job, probably in retail again as I've had a part time job in that before (and have worked as a stable hand, but I'm not interested in doing that as a job again, I look after enough horses already).

I'm planning on working for 2010 before going back to university part-time if it's possible (if not, build up enough savings and do it full-time) either to first do some post-grad in this field or to get a degree with a focus on literature/creative writing.
I'm so lucky my parents aren't expecting my sister and I to start paying rent any time soon.

Serious Desi
10-28-2009, 10:25 AM
@Karen, do you like what you do?

@Carnies, I could never do anything medical. I read my way though an autopsy and felt squirmy-- That's why I write mystery.

@White-Tean: In four years I hope to be there.

Karen Junker
10-28-2009, 12:27 PM
Yes, I like what I do, but...it does interfere with writing. For me, being in editor head space makes it harder to be creative and actually get words out. It's as if the left brain activity overrides the right brain activity.

caromora
10-28-2009, 12:36 PM
I'm a freelance writer and editor. I used to work for a small publisher but left for health and personal reasons. Basically, I'm chained to my computer all day. :)

rosiroo
10-28-2009, 03:57 PM
I'm a marketing asssistant. So I do write for my job, but it's a very different kind of writing- mostly copy for marketing, fundraising and web stuff. But it's all for charity, which is nice :)

ejwriter
10-28-2009, 07:06 PM
i've been a television news producer for ten years.
right now, i'm the senior producer of two hours of early evening news programming for an independent station in arizona. (but with staff shortages, i spend most days producing the 5pm newscast.)

this is a great thread!!

Tink
10-28-2009, 07:20 PM
Agriculture Secretary. Basically that is just a secretary that works for an argiculture firm. We handle almost anything ag related that is associated with what is 'raised' in our area of the country. I enjoy my job because I enjoy natural science. I like the people that I see and work with on a daily basis. I appreciate structure but the added spice of you never know what is going to come up from one day to the next makes my job interesting and fun.

Robin Bayne
10-28-2009, 07:46 PM
You guys are so interesting!!

I also have a BA in English/Philosophy, and work full time at a small community bank doing mortgage lending. (We are one of the safe little banks who never made any of those sub prime loans.)

Ruth2
10-29-2009, 12:24 AM
I manage my family's oil & gas leasing and timber sales. Nothing 9 to 5 about it, and it's also feast or famine when it comes to royalty checks. Always had 1099s instead of W-2s.

Bluegate
10-29-2009, 01:15 AM
I'm an artist. I paint and sculpt. Writing, painting either way I'm staring at a blank white sheet.

PoppysInARow
10-29-2009, 01:19 AM
I'm a student. Next year I'll be working towards my double major in English and Italian. Then it's off to some big building working as a translator. :D

I don't think I could ever be a full-time writer. Just because I get so bored inside the house all day. I'd need a day job to run around and occupy my time with so that when I do sit down to write, it acctually comes out good.

I would like to own a bookstore someday, but with my inability to balence checkbooks I doubt that'll happen. Maybe I'll befriend some old man and on his deathbed he'll give me his fabulously tiny bookstore in the middle of nowehere. :D That'd be the day.

thewakingself
10-29-2009, 01:46 AM
I'm kind of a dabbler. I worked as an architect before I began my full-time studies in finance/strategy (MBA, graduated '08). Right now, I'm an asset manager (a fancy title for what is essentially 'factotum') for a recognizable global brand.

But my heart's in writing. :D

Serious Desi
10-29-2009, 08:31 AM
Yes, I like what I do, but...it does interfere with writing. For me, being in editor head space makes it harder to be creative and actually get words out. It's as if the left brain activity overrides the right brain activity.

Kind of like a perfection thing?

@Bluegate:
I paint also...I'm stretching paper for a tiger watercolor right now. ( It's going to be a tiger :e2cat: )

A lot of these jobs sound so busy...How do you find time to write?

Chumplet
10-29-2009, 09:14 AM
And when you first started out what were your goals, ambitions, expectations?
And if you did, what did you major in? How did you get where you are now?

I always loved painting animals and thought I was going to be a world famous artist like Robert Bateman.

I aimed for the practical side and started out studying graphic design, quit, then went to college to earn my degree in Visual Arts Instruction, majoring in painting and photography.

After graduation I didn't teach. Instead, I worked in retail, selling cameras. In a roundabout way I ended up at Henry's doing their advertising. I learned how to use a typesetting machine and ended up at a newspaper, designing ads. Talk about full circle.

I had written a lot in high school but never thought about writing until three years ago when my husband gave me a creaky old refurbished laptop. I still work at the newspaper, but write whenever I get the chance. I just finished my third novel and after some polishing I hope to snag an agent.

cptwentworth
10-29-2009, 09:24 AM
I'm a court reporter and hate my job. I suppose I'm not the only who is in the wrong field for their temperament, though. Writing is fun. I have no experience in it except for the pleasure I gain from reading, reading, reading. So now I write when I'm not on this blasted forum playing around.

TabithaTodd
10-29-2009, 06:55 PM
Mother, wife, graphics designer, writer in that order of priorities.

AdamH
10-29-2009, 07:10 PM
Part-time actor...actually closer to very casual actor now since I'm now a dad. Have a degree in Theatre with a minor in English.
Work the regular grind setting up payrolls for companies.
Still waiting for that big break so I can focus on writing full time. But I have fun with it, so I'll keep writing whether that break comes or not.

swvaughn
10-29-2009, 07:29 PM
With three contracts (two for series) between my real name and pen name, I'm officially a full-time novelist.

We'll see how long that lasts... :D

In the past I've written copy for a magazine for ten years, done lots of different freelance work, been both crew and manager at McDonalds, worked at a newspaper, held various temp jobs (sorting bottles, running machines), unloaded FedEx trucks, (wo)manned a parking lot booth, been a department secretary, and a bunch of other stuff. Fun jobs. Oh yes.

nitaworm
10-29-2009, 07:29 PM
Are you a full time writer? Most would say that I am. I spend about 20-30 hours a week writing or promoting my writing. Usually from the hours of 8pm to 12am and 6am-7am on weekdays and weekends when I am not doing stuff with the family.

Teacher? I actually teach part-time at a university. I teach IT related courses.

Mother/ Father? Yep, I am a mom of 4 kids - and have a very helpful husband.

Part time waitress/ waiter? Nope.

Lawyer? I wish..lol.

Nanny? Nope, only love watching my own kids - they already know my rules.

Are you Bill Gates? Nope. However, I am an engineer on my full-time job. I actually love it.

And when you first started out what were your goals, ambitions, expectations? When I first started writing, I just wanted to write. Didn't really have a plan for it until I was encouraged to take it farther.

And if you did, what did you major in? How did you get where you are now? I have 2 degrees. My BS is in Business Management, and I minored in Finance. My MS is in Management Information Systems

I truly believe that its alright to have several different career interest. While working as an engineer I also had a travel business, mortgage lender side business, business planner for Real Estate Businesses. I also am 'team mom' on all of my kids sports teams, and lastly am an author who has an obsession for writing. Oh, as for experience in writing...I write technical documents all of the time. I also was an english tutor throughout my years in college.

BigRed
10-29-2009, 09:00 PM
I've done a lot of crap jobs that don't bear mentioning. Spent several years as a software developer. At the moment, I'm a barber. (Oh, and I write! ;))

DWSTXS
10-29-2009, 09:16 PM
I have had 125 jobs over the years.

I know, because I've counted.

Everything from sales, sales manager, marketing (various companies and industries) to chef, paralegal, busboy, dishwasher, photographer, management (various companies and industries) advertising, paper route, photo lab, professional motorcycle racing, etc etc.

I've threatened, (several times), to sit down and write about it, but when I start seriously considering it, I get an extreme case of tired-head and say 'screw it'. . .and then i re-convince myself that no one would read it. And that is usually enough to get me off the hook.

Namatu
10-29-2009, 09:26 PM
I'm an editor/project manager. Mostly I manage and oversee others doing the editing now.

Matera the Mad
10-30-2009, 03:00 AM
I am a -- er -- resource coordinator, or something like that. I work in a mental health resource center. That means I steer people toward information. And set up and maintain the website, edit the newsletter, redirect runaway conversations, print stuff, write stuff, maintain the computers, help people use the computers, fix the computers, find lost e-mail, take computers apart and put them back together again, prepare stuff for events, wash dishes, make coffee, sit and listen to long stories about the effects of antipsychotic drugs, pull weeds, spend half my weekends getting things done that I can't get done on workdays....

Serious Desi
10-30-2009, 07:24 AM
@sonya bateman:
:D yay for you.

@nitaworm:
That is a lot of kids. Most I've ever had to contend with 2 and it was took 3 hours until I was shoving Nemo into the DVD...I was underpaid anyways.

@Matera the Mad: Sounds maddening.

Ciera_
10-30-2009, 07:35 AM
I'm a . . . grade ten student. In a PSDL (Personalized, Self-Directed Learning) school, though! And International Baccalaureate courses! And Spanish and Italian! It's hard work!
Okay, it sounds like I'm bragging. But really I just feel spoiled and lucky not to have to work for real.
All you folks who hold down full-time dayjobs and still write, you amaze me! (Some of you have FAMILIES to look after, too! I can barely grow one of those little foam animals that you add water to and they become big and spongy and a little distorted . . . y'know?)

nconner
10-30-2009, 07:53 AM
I'm a full-time author. Mostly nonfiction books, but I've sold three novels: a mystery and the first two books in an urban fantasy series.

I majored in English in college and kept on going until they gave me a PhD and kicked me out. I taught English for a number of years, at all levels from high school through graduate school. In recent years, I've also worked as an editor, instructional designer, and corporate trainer.

C.M. Daniels
11-01-2009, 12:39 PM
I've got an MA in Forensic Anthropology. I work as a Deputy Coroner and as a professor at the local college. I do some baking and jewelry making on the side to make some extra cash. I love what I do.

I'm not the type of person who could write full-time. I'm at my most creative when I've got other stuff going on in my life.

Ken
11-01-2009, 12:52 PM
... am a mag columnist.
To make ends meet I also temp :cry:

nitaworm
11-01-2009, 01:58 PM
@sonya bateman:
:D yay for you.

@nitaworm:
That is a lot of kids. Most I've ever had to contend with 2 and it was took 3 hours until I was shoving Nemo into the DVD...I was underpaid anyways.

@Matera the Mad: Sounds maddening.

LOL! I am obsessive. I love having my kids and they are a great resource and inspiration for my writing since I write YA stuff. Not to mention, they keep me grounded and really test my organizational skills. Luckily, being an engineer is very flexible or being a working mom would have been difficult.

NewKidOldKid
11-01-2009, 02:56 PM
I have had 125 jobs over the years.

I know, because I've counted.

Everything from sales, sales manager, marketing (various companies and industries) to chef, paralegal, busboy, dishwasher, photographer, management (various companies and industries) advertising, paper route, photo lab, professional motorcycle racing, etc etc.

I've threatened, (several times), to sit down and write about it, but when I start seriously considering it, I get an extreme case of tired-head and say 'screw it'. . .and then i re-convince myself that no one would read it. And that is usually enough to get me off the hook.

Actually, I would totally read that.

I was an ESL teacher for six years. Worked in Russia, China, Vietnam and Argentina. I'm also a certified personal trainer and nutrition consultant and worked on the field for years. Now I write full-time.

ETA: I forgot to say I'm back in school pursuing a Criminal Justice degree.

RBSHoo
11-01-2009, 05:44 PM
Lawyer. I don't love the realities of the practice of law, but it does give me a ton of material for writing fiction.

Chasing the Horizon
11-02-2009, 08:14 AM
I run a part-time home-based business repairing and refurbishing Apple computers.

I was homeschooled and got a GED, but didn't go to college.

My inability to get along with people has ruined every career (or even idea for a career) I've ever had, other than writing. So yes, my goal is to be a full-time writer.

Mara
11-02-2009, 08:54 AM
I'm unemployed and haven't been able to get anything for quite a while. I'm still looking for work, but I've been putting full-time working hours (and overtime) into learning to write novels as quickly as possible. Writing was always my strongest skill, and it got me through grad school more than my actual skill in the subject did. :)

My previous jobs have been packing boxes at a toy warehouse (urgh), working at Wal-mart (not as bad), substitute teaching (boring), and adjunct teaching college history (fun, but short-term and unreliable).

As unreliable as income can be for full-time writers, and as hard as it can be to get published, it's still actually a better prospect for me than anything else. So, I see any non-writing job I might get as a supporting job while I'm getting my writing career going.

Oh, and original goals and major:

Started out going for computer science, wanted to write software. I'm naturally very good at programming, but I started to hate it. I was suffering from depression and needed a big change in my life.

I switched to liberal arts, originally to be a writer for lack of better ideas. I ended up deciding to major in history instead, and eventually got my M.A. I could have tried for a Ph.D. if I'd put real effort into it, but I was tired of going to school and accumlating debts.

I tried teaching a little bit, and it was fun, but not really the ideal job for me. Also, the job prospects for historians just aren't very good right now. So, back to writing.

Nivarion
11-02-2009, 10:04 AM
I scoop ice cream.

Serious Desi
11-02-2009, 10:17 AM
LOL! I am obsessive. I love having my kids and they are a great resource and inspiration for my writing since I write YA stuff. Not to mention, they keep me grounded and really test my organizational skills. Luckily, being an engineer is very flexible or being a working mom would have been difficult.


I have horrible organizational skills on all different levels. I've lost The Great Expectations again, and when I do find it I'll being staying up late to read it again. ( Which means I should probably get off the comp.)

@ Ciera_
That's amazing. I'm an AP student....I don't know.... that kind of pales in comparison to you but , but good for you.

@Chasing the Horizon, so you know about apple computers? If you get back to this I want to talk to you...I'm in great need of a Mac-pert.

@Mara: Sounds like you've been though a lot, hope to see one of your books at Barnes and Nobels.

@Nivarion: Ice cream is delicious .

cscarlet
11-02-2009, 06:56 PM
What's your job besides writing?

I work in Biodefense. I teach military, hazmat teams, public health, and other first responders how to respond to Bioterrorism attacks (should one occur).

I don't write much. I have a few scientific journals who have said whenever I want to send them something I can email it directly to the Editor and Chief, and and it will get printed right away: But I don't get paid for those pieces. So, I only write them when there is a subject I am particularly (and sometimes irrationally) passionate about at the time.

Right now I am writing a novel, but it's my first one. I needed some kind of creative outlet because I'm so left brained every day. That, and it is a new challenge for me. I'm big on conquering challenges ;)


And when you first started out what were your goals, ambitions, expectations? I have always loved to write, but I never intended on it being a career. Matter of fact, I still don't anticipate it turning into a career. If I get published someday AND get paid for it? I'll be stoked. Bonus for me.


And if you did, what did you major in? How did you get where you are now?Originally I wanted to go to Africa and do research on tropical and emerging infectious diseases, so I did a lot in the sciences: Majored in Biology and Chemistry, Minored in Virology and Immunology, did research on West Nile Virus when it was a new disease, ran an Anthrax diagnostics laboratory during the 2002 Anthrax attacks. Past that, I fell in love with Anti-Bioterrorism Preparedness, so I got my Masters degree in Public Health, then became an Emergency Planner for the State of Virginia Dept. of Health, and was then finally hired at where I am today :)

My best advice is to do what you love. It's fine to have student loans up to the gazoo if it gets you a good job or allows you to pursue something you're passionate in (right now, my student loans would make you cry). The good news is: Student loans have low interest rates and are considered "forgivable" debt (as in they won't impact your credit score or prevent you from getting additional loans: car, home, etc.). Unfortunately, you do have to pay them off ;)

Of course, you have to have realistic expectations as well. Very, very few people make millions writing. So obviously you can't expect that. You can, however, expect to work hard and do many small things on the side to hopefully end up with a decent career in writing. If it's what you love, then go for it!!! :)

But if you have other passions in life, you can always "make time" to write in addition to a full time career. Especially if you have an interest in something which could translate over to your writing (like, say, you love to write crime novels and you are a lawyer: voila, instant inspiration on a daily basis). So, that's always something to consider too. It may be slower going, but it doesn't drive me batty. That way, the writing stays my "outlet" and doesn't ever get confused with "work." Everyone is different, though!

GOOD LUCK! :)

seaaircarol
11-02-2009, 07:18 PM
What an incredibly interesting thread.

I always wanted to be a writer, but was convinced by others that it wasn't practical. Took some journalism classes and worked at a couple of newspapers, but I really wasn't suited to it--I'm way too shy to be a reporter.

I have a B.A. in English, but had no idea what to do with it after college. Thought about teaching--even took all the methods courses. But then I freaked out once I had to student teach...Again, was way too shy to command a classroom.

I worked at a storybook park for four years, and that was fun. In fact, a lot of what I write now takes place at storybook parks.

I've worked in customer service at a children's museum and at a library as a clerk.

In between all these things, I worked for my brother's software company for various periods of time, doing a variety of jobs including proofreading.

When I hit 40, I decided that life is short, and I would pursue writing more seriously. So now I work part-time for my brother's company and I write.

DWSTXS
11-02-2009, 08:25 PM
Well, gee thanks economy!

Went to work this morning, the owner came into my office, and said they're shutting it down.

I am officially among the ranks of the unemployed. and I'm wondering what the hell's going to happen.

I have no cushion, no savings, no credit cards. I'm literally about 30 days from homelessness.
My brother is working in Iraq. He's saying come on over here and work. I love money and all, but getting shot at, and bombed? Believe me, he's sent pics. It's not safe.

:(

seaaircarol
11-02-2009, 08:30 PM
Sooo sorry to hear that.

Best of luck to you.

Carol

Zelenka
11-03-2009, 04:30 AM
I'm a subtitler for a TV company. Basically I type up the subtitles that viewers would see if they used teletext here, but only for programmes coming out of our region (so not the nationwide ITV stuff). I do either live typing (which is such fun, typing at about 140wpm or something, absolutely love it) or pre-prepaired stuff, which mostly involves transcribing the programme and then timing it to fit in with frames and shot changes.

We also work the autocue / teleprompter on occasions, either in studio or on outside broadcasts. Usually I handle the OB stuff because I was a freelance autocue operator before I joined the team and so I've used the equipment more than most folks, but to be honest I prefer subtitling. I actually love the physical act of typing for some reason.

MGraybosch
11-03-2009, 04:40 AM
I am officially among the ranks of the unemployed. and I'm wondering what the hell's going to happen.

You have my sympathies, as one who was recently unemployed and is currently in a temp-to-perm situation.

Serious Desi
11-03-2009, 12:30 PM
Well, gee thanks economy!

Went to work this morning, the owner came into my office, and said they're shutting it down.

I am officially among the ranks of the unemployed. and I'm wondering what the hell's going to happen.

I have no cushion, no savings, no credit cards. I'm literally about 30 days from homelessness.
My brother is working in Iraq. He's saying come on over here and work. I love money and all, but getting shot at, and bombed? Believe me, he's sent pics. It's not safe.

:(

:Hug2:
Geez, I'm so sorry, you'll be able to find something. It's the holidays the stores are looking for extras, you know, just for now or something. Good Luck.


@cscarlet:
I love taking science.I I love learning all those stuff but I'm a concept learner and when I comes down to the mol, the particle and certainly the quantum chapter I'm about ready to jump off a building. ( Loving genetics though) My passions are all artistic and animals.

@seaaircarol:
No has told me anything I say is impractical. Last night I told my father I was going to be god and he just shrugged and said, you'll go to hell but go for it.

@JessRampage:
I know what you mean, I love typing too...I really love the sound of typing, it sounds so productive and so busy.