When I first graduated from college I didn’t exactly have a clear-cut plan on what to do next with my life. I just knew that I wanted to write. So that’s what I did – I wrote and I wrote as fast as I could. I wrote poems, children’s stories, short stories and started novels. Did they get published? Occasionally yes, but mostly no. Did it make me much money? No. It didn’t matter to me. I just wanted to write.
My words could not pay the rent, nor feed or clothe me, yet they sustained me. I was young and I thought “Yes, this is it. This is the way I want to live my life”. It wasn’t easy, but it was my choice. I adhered to Dr. Seuss who said:
“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. You are the guy who’ll decide where to go”.
Sadly, reality sucks big time and when the next rent was due, I knew I had to suck it up and join the rat race.
Grow Up and Get a Job
That’s what I did. Only getting a job wasn’t that easy. I wanted to write for a living as did the rest of the English Literature graduates from all over the country. I sent my CV to all the big-time magazines and newspapers – dream big right? I have no idea whether the Devil really wears Prada, I was never even invited for an interview. And so I sent my weather-beaten CV out again, this time to smaller publications, end result? Nada, zilch, nein, non. They were just not hiring, or they just didn’t want to hire me.
Clichés are so annoying. I know now though that the reason why I find it so irritating is that they are all true! You don’t just see them in movies, it actually happens in real life. Yes, I waited on tables, stacked cereal boxes in supermarkets. When you have rent to pay, beggars indeed can’t be choosers. So I finally did it, I grew up and got a job.
“Keep Calm and Carry On”
I have that poster on my wall. It became my mantra as I wiped tables and served coffee. If any of my old college friends asked, I’d say “I’m a freelance writer”. One day, I decided to become the lie. Only I didn’t waste my time sending out CVs, I turned to the internet. I heard about freelance platforms and put up a profile in every available one online.
Like everything in the internet, it happened fast, I was finally being paid to write. It didn’t pay big-time at first, at least not enough to be able to throw in the day job. But I persevered and slowly found clients who were willing to pay me more. Maybe I’ll still get to work for a bigwig newspaper or magazine, but until that happens, I’m going to write as fast as I can, online.
Carey Cruz is currently working as a chief writer at bestessay.com with more than 8 years of writing experience online.