My mother always told me that nobody likes their job. This statement made me even more determined not to fit the mold. I was definitely going to find something fun and exciting.
At first I thought writing about music would be ideal, so I did that for a while. Then I started to hate listening to music because I knew I’d have to write about it afterward. That ended soon after it started.
Then I started writing about film, somehow thinking that wouldn’t turn out the same way. I was in heaven when I got a job that saw me going to film festivals for free. That’s all I’d really dreamt of for about a year before that. But soon I found eating popcorn for every meal of the day tiresome, and, again, the films started to lose their appeal when I knew I’d have to articulate my feelings about them later. That’s still a big part of what I do for a living (not at Broken Pencil, but rather… the day job) and, while I kind of enjoy writing about film as a specialty, I can’t see it being what I do for the bulk of my life.
For this issue of BP I spoke to a lot of people in the craft community about their projects and their desires to craft for a living (see page 13) and they got me thinking about the possibility of a career change. I’m into craft, though much like my writing career, I’ve had trouble deciding which kind of craft I like the best. I toyed with (and briefly became obsessed with) origami in 2004; that was post-papermaking which was my thing from 2001-2003; and I picked up knitting (and put it down again shortly afterward) in 1997.
In 2006 I took up knitting again and this time it stuck. I’m still not brave enough to stray far from a pattern, but I’m always looking for something new to knit, or someone new to knit for, so I was envious of the people I spoke to who were finding ways to incorporate craft heavily into their lives, and as a livelihood.
Since I’m currently experiencing one of those “what should I do with myself” moments, I thought about it. While I’m envious, part of me feels that if I were to try something like this I would begin to hate it. It could become the next music writing job (or music store gig–I should never mix business with music) of my life. I started writing for a living because I love to write. I wrote zines in high school and university, which was my jump from short stories in public school, and magazines seemed the next logical step. Now I equate writing with work and sometimes that kills the joy. Knitting is currently my escape from writing (while Broken Pencil is my escape from the day job), so what would I have if I had to knit to make a living?
Despite my complaints I still love magazines, I just think there’s more truth to what my mom said than I originally thought. I may have a few dream jobs, but they still get annoying now and then. Since writing and editing are so high paced, knitting is my way to unravel, and I think I should keep something as a hobby instead of trying to make everything I like my profession.