|This picture has nothing to do with this post...*smile*|
If you don't respect yourself ain't nobody gonna give a good cahoot na na na na
-The Staple Singers
So as you all know in addition to being a Prada ogling, meditation sitting, self help book reading, Clueless quoting, miracle believing, crystal using, ya mama joke telling, spirit junkie, I am also a writer. I wasn't always a writer but I always wrote and from that intense desire to express myself through words and such I have carved a career path in journalism out of a BS in textiles and apparel merchandising.
Following my passion from part time hobby blogger to real live writer has been a struggle, emotionally and financially. I know we're in the midst of a big fat R-word but that really has nothing to do with me struggling as a writer. Just yesterday I met a girl my age who went to a college I never heard of in Tennessee and has a job in the photo department at Vanity Fair, and the lovely girl who came from Theory's corporate office to help us shut down our store is only 2 yrs older than I am. So the recession doesn't have damn thing to do with me not having a job that fulfills my need to capitalize on being a natural born communicator and my bank account. It really only has to do with me knowing my worth and politely demanding that others acknowledge it as well. Or as Cartman would say, "Respect my authority!!"
|Hair color & a Macbook cost $$$ so we know she's getting paid some way|
Case in point, after finishing a great internship at a nationally circulated pregnancy mag based in Atlanta instead of only settling for another internship in publications or a job assisting a stylist, I went back to what I knew and got a job in retail. Fast forward a few more years, and every year I say "This is the last holiday I'll be spending in the mall," and every year I apply for shitty mall jobs while I write for fee ad nauseam. This past year I put my foot down and said hell to the no to picking up more free gigs only to pick up more free gigs because that is what I thought my writing was worth, $0. Really? I spend at least an hour or two a week researching blog posts, then another hour or three writing them only to have another clip to my name that does not fill my closet or my fridge. Do you think Carrie Bradshaw worked for free? She at least got paid in store credit with all of the French and Italian names chillaxing in her closet in her rent controlled apartment on the Upper West Side. I'm sure the thought never even occurred to her that she should NOT be paid for her work. Actually, I don't know anyone who has any kind of job that thinks they should not get paid for what they do. Even interns think they should get paid for schlepping. So why the heck did I think I shouldn't get paid, well to be more accurate why did I behave as though I thought I shouldn't get paid? That grasshopper is quite simple; I didn't feel good enough.
I didn't feel like I could compete with the Poor Little It Girls of Atlanta and for damn sure New York because I didn't have daddy's money, scratch that their daddy's money, or the right degree or I wasn't a 5'2" blonde with an always sunny disposition and a pair of Louboutins. I was/am the perfect balance of Beyonce's sass, Carrie's fashion addiction, Zooey Deschanel's quirky girl behavior but less annoying, with Daria's love for books and sarcasm balanced by J Lo's ass...oh and I carry a YSL downtown tote in charcoal. Basically, I'm not that different from those girls, I only thought I was. So as of today, no more of that! I deserve to be paid exactly what I'm worth and I won't settle for anything less than that. I also have decided to start dressing like I deserve to be paid exactly what I'm worth...I'm not really sure what that means but when I find out I'll tell you.
As for writing, I've scaled back on the free work and will only be accepting PAID postions to build my shoe collection one check at a time : )