The Ballad of an Unemployed Writer

It all started when I was 15 and I had nowhere to turn to for guidance. My parents signed me up for a therapist, which helped me throw away the knife I wanted to stab myself with because of the bullying. Even my father would join in by yelling at me and giving cold looks if I didn’t do as he advised.

I didn’t know how to handle so much stress from those awful people giving me crap. So I wrote. The writing became a part of my therapy in writing songs, poetry and stories to tell myself before bed.

Eventually, I received my Bachelor’s degree in 2011 and I was ready to show my resume and writing samples to publications. My internship at Media Two Publishing in Hampden was an adventure I enjoyed immensely, calling about calling about upcoming events to write about for The Hunt magazine online and editing for other clients like The Port of Baltimore.

Sadly, the internship was unpaid and it only lasted the summer after I left college. After that, I realized what my dad meant by saying, “You graduated at the wrong time,” and, “You should have taken a second major like business.”

On Thursday night, the 11th, my father yelled at me for not applying for a job anywhere else, even retail or restaurant positions. He said I could write whenever I wanted to, but I had to get a real job in something else first. Maybe receptionist or stocking shoes at Payless or working at McDonald’s. Somewhere much lower than where I should be.

I told him it would feel like being forced to do something I hate with people who wouldn’t work with me forever. I don’t want to become a servant to my boss, that’s what I’m afraid of.

But I’m also afraid of the federal government coming for my arms and legs because I haven’t paid my college loans yet and I’ve reached my limit of deferment applications. I’m scared that they might send me to jail for not paying them anything.

Still, my mother hates it when I think in extremes. I can’t help it, I have anxiety disorder. I worry about a lot of things every day of my life that I curl up in bed late at night, all tense and cold and trying to fight the restlessness.

Dad assured me that those bad days weren’t going to happen for long. As long as I didn’t let those people get to me, I wouldn’t have bad days forever.

I’m still scared of not doing something I was trained to do for the rest of my life. Dad was a biology major and he works on cars for a living. He’s been doing it for 25 years. I don’t want that to happen to me.

“Everything’s all right,” mom keeps saying. “There’s no rush.”

So on Friday after that stressful, depressing night, I called DORS (Department of Rehabilitation Services) for an appointment for finding a job. I sent a handful of applications to companies on Career Builder. Then a friend came over to cheer me up with a tiny trip for drinks.

I felt quite silly afterwards, but that was when I realized there are some people worse off than me. I checked Facebook a little earlier for that former Towerlight editor who hurt me back in college- she’s working at a Game Stop full time instead of working at a great newspaper. Not even Patch hired her.

At least I’m still writing here. This blog is for all of you readers who look forward to something new and fresh, fiction, nonfiction, poetry, or prose. This is all for you.

Welcome all.

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4 thoughts on “The Ballad of an Unemployed Writer

  1. Hi, I feel your pain. There’s no shame in being an unemployed writer. We all have to start somewhere, right?

  2. Hey I am so excited I found your weblog, I really found you by accident, while
    I was researching on Yahoo for something else, Anyways I am here now and
    would just like to say thanks a lot for a tremendous post and a all round interesting blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read through it all at the moment but I have bookmarked it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read more, Please do keep up the superb work.

    • Thank you so much! I normally don’t get a lot of web traffic these days, but I do appreciate people reading on. Keep checking in every week to see more. I’ll hopefully be posting more after the holiday season.

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