What does a dream job look like? It’s easy to idealize with any job you don’t yet have what it will entail. Does that make it naive to dream about if you really don’t know what you are dreaming about? Probably not, but better to spend time with a realistic or rational dream that you fully appreciate than an idea that is not yet fully formed, no?
My dream job, in naive form, is to be a work at home blogger. My dream job more fully formed would be a freelance writer and critic (for clothes I think. Not a thing? I will make it a thing). This partly requires me to complete forming my opinions on what qualifies one to be a writer and critic, and whether I need to actually do anything to qualify myself first before pursuing this dream rationally. Is a background in performing arts, studio arts, and the law enough? Critical thinking and deep thinking along with organized detailed writing should be sufficient to begin I think. I dream of it being freelance because that gives me time to do more reading that feel like pleasure but is actually in pursuit of the dream (like reading philosophical books, artist biographies, and niche histories and such things).
Another part of actualizing this dream that I have less fully formed is the ideal income structure. Everyone can pretty much say that having more money would be a benefit, but do we all think about where it comes from? I do in the corporate sense but it’s harder for me to figure it out in the freelance sense. Corporate can get you more money but it usually involves just putting more hours or performing a harder task. When these are the sole reason for why someone gets paid more, it is not necessarily a compelling career path in my opinion. I’d rather get paid $40,000 a year and work 40 hours of challenging enough but not draining work a week, instead of $60,000 a year and work 60 hours a week where you never have time to take a breath when you are at work or at home. All that makes me think is that is a life that feels shorter, and more stressful. I’d rather find a way to get by with the $40k, instead of work like crazy so I don’t have to compromise on lifestyle.
So what does that mean for the blog? First it involves a decision to not be “just a blog” and transition to treating myself like a professional writer that does more than write “this is pretty buy it” lists and home people buy things are clicking on a commission link. I’d rather earn a flat fee, or less income, if it comes from something more neutral. Is one Google ad square naive? How do you balance the want for authenticity with a humane desire to want to make a living without a hustle? Those are questions I haven’t fully answered for my dream job yet.
It’s much easier to come up with this things I want to spend money on. I want to be able to provide a freelance job for others. I want to hire illustrators for essays. I want to hire expert writers who know more about something that I am interested in. I want to be able to buy a luxury product and provide a sincere critique that doesn’t feel the need to sell the product for a commission with the option. With a true critique I serve a reader better who wants or needs to know if they should spend their hard earned dollars on such an items that is harder to find an in depth and thoughtful critique. Saving people the gamble of having to try it for themselves and take a bigger monetary risk to do so, that would be an underlying goal to my writing.
I don’t know if it is a millennial generation thing, but my hesitations in not perusing this is rooted in an ironic theme: everyone constantly telling you find a job that pays you to do what you love, not settle, and to make the leap. But is it not better to make a more educated leap? Is it not better to figure out if having a job that pays you to do what you love would actually make you happier in the grand scheme of things and not just the short run? I would hate to learn that certain loves in life could become ruined if pursued as a career, when I could have thought about it longer and realized that there was an equal love that could have been pursued and not ruined in this way. Of course, you can’t sit around waiting and thinking forever. Hence my hesitation up until now; no one is here to tell you when you’ve thought about it for enough time to not be considered a reckless jump. Cheers to making a measured decision? Or cheers to a reckless jump of faith without a basis? Is it right to ask advice about which of these choices to make? Is it right to judge someone for making one of those over the other? Abstaining from making a choice remains a choice, but you can always chose to not voice what you decided to others because I don’t think being a writer means others are entitled to guilt you into living a life that is completely transparent. That’s not a choice that I will make. Time will reveal the choice I did make here.