Well, it’s been a while since I wrote on here. In fact, last couple of times the auto renew came up, I was like yeah I forgot I had a blog, but I have done the technological equivalent of dusting down my old diary (resetting passwords) and thought I would do a bit of a catch up blog.
When I was growing up there was a programme on the telly that personified the unemployment of the thatcher years. boys from the blackstuff. This was a great but ultimately tragic story of a group of ex-coal miners from the north east of England struggling to find gainful employment in the wake of the pit closures. One of the stand out characters was Yosser Hughes played with impeccable poignancy by Bernard Hill he of Lord of the Rings fame. Yosser quite literally walked to the beat of his own drum. There’s something about the desperation of Yosser that I clearly channel when it comes to getting a writing gig and I’ll tell you for why.
I nearly got my first writing gig. Nearly being the operative word. Alas, close but no cigar. I would like to tell you that I was headhunted by someone who read this blog and fell in love with my writing , but the truth is an ad flashed up on facebook- blog about game of thrones . I saw it and thought, I like game of thrones, in fact, I had written a blog about it once, so why not? So, I applied and I actually got a reply back. The editor seemed nice, asked me for a link to my blog, seemed to like what he saw here, agreed with some of the points I made but informed me that they do list based blogs, not content driven and asked me what my rates would be!
This is where it all got a bit tricky, as having never been this far in the process, I didn’t want to appear the amateur I clearly am. I have a friend from uni who spent sometime editing a blog about Liverpool football club. I’d link it here but he no longer does it. So he was the go to man to ask about rates. His advice was for a good site, which this was, rates could be anywhere up to £200. So, thinking this was the opening of some sort of negotiation I suggested this.
That was nearly a month ago, and the e-mail chain went deadly quiet after that. Initially, I thought that perhaps it was to do with the weekend, but the week drew in and I still heard nothing back. Eventually I thought perhaps I needed to lower my rate and give him an idea of what sort of stuff I was thinking of writing. So, like a crazy tinder date who went on one date and cant take no for an answer, I sent him another e-mail saying I was new to this, how about £100 and here are some things I have been thinking on about the blog. Still nothing.
And that’s that. I’d love to say that he got back to me and now I am going to be paid for doing what I love. But this the real world and rejection is the norm not the exception. Us writers need a tough hide to carry on doing what they are doing. We have to suck it up and move on rather than lingering at the door of a would be publisher with a pathetic bunch of flowers to catch a glimpse of them just to ask why? At the moment I am 76 thousand words into a novel. I spend a lot of time writing that, which is partly why this went by the wayside.
At the moment I can feel a bit of a fire being lit under my butt. I have been in the same job for over ten years, and while it pays the bills (just about) and is relatively secure, it really isn’t what I ever wanted to do. I took it to act as a stop gap when I left university and ended up staying in it while children grew up. I had gone to uni with one kid and ended up coming out with a degree and a baby. Local Government taxation was never in my ambitions. Is it anyone’s?
So, I have today dusted down my CV, and with the near miss under my belt, decided to try and get a job which not only pays the bills, but also fulfils what I have wanted to do all my life.
So if you are a prospective employer, whose appetite was whetted enough to be browsing here. Give me a chance. Unlike Yosser, I promise I won’t headbutt anyone.