Photo: Alexander Andrews
There are so many hobbies you can get good at in this world, with some of these things being outright outlandish.
Like, who even sets out to become the best ventriloquist in the world? How about dedicating your life to rock climbing? Even becoming a gaming superstar is a thing now.
No matter what niche you look at, there’ll be people who’ve already reached the pinnacle of their craft. People like Jeff Dunham, Alex Honnold, and Lee Sang-hyeok, to name a few.
The thing is though, is that before you become a Jane Austen, or a Tony Hawk, you’ll inevitably face resistance from the people around you. People who cannot comprehend your goals as well as you do.
Photo: Jules A
I remember my time as a new journalist for a business paper. I remember the events I had to attend, the free lunches I received, the special access that I was afforded.
I remember mingling with the other reporters, giving them a knowing nod as they typed away at their bulky laptops (workplace desktops were still a thing back then).
“Tight deadline, huh?” I’d ask.
I had it easy. My company went to print every week. These guys? They worked for the dailies. “You going to send this in by today?”
“No, by lunch,” my new friend would reply.
Photo: Timothy L Brock
I have no idea why people coo at the mention of me being a writer. It happens every time the conversation steers into the land of ‘What do you do’.
The replies I’ve gotten for answering truthfully could very well fill up a Twitter account, and that might just be the very thing I’ll do next. What’s that? You want a sample?
All right, how bout this gem from a guy: “You’ve just become ten percent more attractive in my eyes now that I know you’re an author.” No such luck with the ladies though, unfortunately.
Who’d have thought travel writing would exist? You get to experience something you otherwise wouldn’t, and they pay for it? What is this, a writer’s wet dream?
When I flew to Boracay for my first travel assignment, I couldn’t believe I was doing it. Here I was, a writer that had stumbled across various dead-end jobs before finding this gig, and I was well on my way to collecting passport stamps and magazine bylines.
That honeymoon period lasted barely two months though, because while travel writing was fun, it also offered what any other job did—the potential for it to suck.
Photo: Jason Strull
I’m fortunate enough to have grown up as a nobody who’d had a day job that involved public speaking.
What that taught me was that if I were to talk to a crowd of strangers, I better damn well have something interesting to say, lest I end up talking to a disinterested audience for however long it is I’m slated to talk.