It has been at least since months since I had received my last government pay check from the now defunct Office of the Presidential Adviser for Jobs Generation under Secretary Luis P. Lorenzo, Junior and had gone back to the wild woods, so to speak, of writing for a living.
It was about two or three months into freelance writing that I rediscovered just how tough the market is and will, perhaps, always be.
There are a lot of good writers out there, each with their own specialization and for a jack of all trades such as myself (okay, let's be honest here, I'm really a hack), that sometimes means getting peanuts for writing like a mad man for an hour or so then getting a cute writing fee -- which is actually great if you can string together about 5 to 10 of them in a day everyday but bad if you can only manage 5 to 10 in a month.
Needless to say, I got 5 to 10 writing jobs a month all paying a cute fee.
It was utterly demoralizing at one point. What those 5 to 10 jobs in a month amounted to was just about 10 percent of the fee I normally demanded for just one job -- before I had dropped out of the freelance writing scene four years ago and gone full time into government work.
But, beyond counting peanuts, there was a bit more satisfaction involved and this mostly came from the feeling of being, essentially, your own boss even if the income wasn't that great... yet.
Like I always say during those times when I felt so low, I am a writer and I know this because I'd be writing even if no one paid me to write. From this viewpoint, getting paid to write actually becomes more of a bonus.
Anyway, after sticking it out for the last couple of months, holding on seems to have finally paid of and things are looking up.
Just recently, a friend called me up and asked me to do some writing for a cable TV show. Then another friend called me up for a huge writing job. Then two former clients sent me text messages asking for a paid meeting so we could discuss how much it would cost them to hire me for a string of tri-media projects (I do broadcast and print, from writing to production).
At this point, even though the checks haven't come in yet, I'm already thanking God for taking care of me... I had held on to the verse that said something like, if God makes sure the sparrows
have something to eat, shouldn't you expect that he'd take much better care of you? (I have to pick up my bible again, darn, I used to have these things memorized).
That's it for now... I'll blog again, time permitting.