I recently asked the effervescent Erin Bowman when she felt safe enough to leave her Day Job. She’s very active and funny on twitter @erin_bowman. She loves Mean Girls, what can I say? Awesome! You can read her response to my question here.
It's an important question because every writer I know is head-over-heels-in-love with the idea that someday they, too, will quit their Day Job to become the mysterious and elusive ‘Full Time Writer.’ I've thought about quitting every job I’ve ever had to pursue writing. I’ve even practiced what I’d say to everyone on the day I would quit:
(‘F* you, F* you, F* you, you’re cool, F* you, I’m outta here’ – in the manner of Half Baked. Did I just show my age?)
For many of us, it may only be a dream. We may never be able to quit our Day Job. I think Chuck Wendig said it best: "Most successful full-time writers don’t one day roll out of bed, brew a cuppa joe, then tell their day job boss to eat a bucket of whale dicks and then declare themselves the President of Writerland..." We might need a stead Day Job because of crushing student loan/car/credit card debt. We might be starting a family or a single income family and unable to leave the stability of a Day Job.
Have no fear, the Day Job is what we make of it and as writerly-creative types we can make the best of anything. (It's what we do. *rolls up sleeves* *gets to work*)
I've spent the last several weeks looking for parallels between the writing world and the Day Job world. The results were inspiring and I plan to share them over multiple posts.
Do you have a Day Job? Does it hinder or inspire your writing?
Need more on how our Day Jobs can make us better writers?
Check out this post about taking criticism.
Or this post on Stability and Creativity.
Or this post on Discipline - you gotta have it.