For those of you who dream of getting paid to write (or direct or production design or shoot or whatever else), I highly recommend reading Kelly Oxford’s recent Tumblr post.
A little background info: Kelly Oxford is a super-smart writer whose Twitter feed has earned her over a hundred thousand followers. Big whoop, right? Wrong. She’s also sold a screenplay, two pilots, and a book. She is the real deal. Last year, TIME named her one of the 140 best Twitter feeds to follow.
Recently, the LOS ANGELES TIMES profiled her. The headline read:
She took offense to the idea of “taking a short cut,” so she wrote a damn good piece about the toils of a writer, specifically an unpaid, undiscovered writer. One of my favorite parts:
If you’re thinking “That’s a lot of work for something that might not pay off.”
THEN THIS IS NOT YOUR BAG SORRY.
You do that [writing], and you do it with NO HOPES OF EVER MAKING A LIVING AT IT.
You do that because you love it and coming home to it is what gets you through your long shifts at the restaurant, it gets you through folding $200 jeans for the entire day, it makes you not want to kill yourself while you photocopy and sign paperwork for your paycheck.
If you aren’t already doing it because you love it, you probably aren’t a writer.