they pay to kiss your feet

since there's no one else around, we let our hair grow long and forget all we used to know. then our skin gets thicker from living out in the snow.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

a letter to unemployed creatives.

i'm hoping google spiders will crawl that title and people who've been looking for a job for what seems like forever will find this.

if you did, hi.

if not, hi anyway.

i was an unemployed job seeker. for a year and a month. it was depressing. demeaning. annoying. mundane. and, at times, belittling.

but. (there is always a but.)
i ended up getting an amazing job.

but it didn't happen how these sort of things used to happen. nope.
i had to network.
you. must. network.

i was just talking to a fellow copywriter who has been unemployed and freelancing for awhile. he said, "it seems like in order to get anywhere these days, you HAVE to know someone."

he couldn't have been more right.

connections matter.

so start making them.

spend your free time (and i know you have lots of it) attending industry events. take leaders in our field out for coffee. pick their brain. ask them for suggestions, advice, anything. because these things, if you do them well, will eventually lead to a job.

but you have to be patient.

like more patient than you have ever been.

and you have to continue to produce work. somehow.

try a self-promotion campaign. (it worked for me.)

and in the meantime, consider contract jobs. they pay the bills. and you'll meet more people. and make new connections.

but mostly, don't stop creating. because if you really want to be in this field - this arena that requires us to be inventive, idea-generators, amazing, fresh, talented and quick - you must never stop practicing. growing. becoming better.

read a book (or five) on advertising or creativity or both.

stay inspired.

stay informed.

and mostly, stay connected.

because you never know if the next person you meet could lead to the job you've always wanted.


  • At 1:49 PM, Anonymous Suzanne Weinstock said…

    I am a freelancer working on an article for Shape about dealing with the emotional impact of unemployment and I am reaching out to women to share their experiences and coping strategies with me. Would you be available for a phone interview in the next couple of weeks?

    Suzanne Weinstock

  • At 11:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    This was great. Thank you so much.

    But what I'm struggling with is not only how to find a job, but how to land freelancing or contract jobs. What did you do to make that happen? How do you make THOSE contacts? Because craigslist just isn't panning out. And to struggle with even finding those jobs is very spirit-crushing.

  • At 2:01 PM, Blogger Pensive Girl said…


    i landed my freelance gigs through networking with people for full-time gigs.

    and people i know who recommended me as a copywriter to people they know.

    craigslist is the devil when it comes to this.


Post a Comment

<< Home