How do you introduce yourself when you have more than one career? That question still stumps me sometimes. When people ask me what I do for a living, do I say that I am a writer, a translator, or a librarian? The answer is… It depends!
If I want to promote a specific aptitude, then I’ll stick to one particular job. For example, when I happen to strike up a conversation with an editor at a book fair, you may be sure I will put the emphasis on my writing career.
However, if I introduce myself to a new neighbour, I will most likely mention all three. Why? Because any one of my careers may bring me in contact with more assignments either directly or indirectly should that person know someone who has a need for one of my professional skills.
If you’re a beginner, you may be tempted to say, “Oh, I just write part-time.” Please, eliminate the word just from your vocabulary when speaking of your work. By inserting that tiny little word, you are demeaning your writing considerably, as if you are worth less than someone who writes full-time. As we all know, more is not necessarily better. Don’t be timid about it – claim your writing career from the get-go.
On the other hand, if you’ve been writing part-time for several years, you may feel embarrassed that you haven’t reached full-time status yet. I personally went through this phase when I reached my ten-year milestone. I kept reading success stories of these new kids on the block who had made it after selling their very first book, and here I was still writing whenever I could fit it in. If this is the case for you, feel free to drop the part-time part altogether, especially if it’s not relevant to the situation at hand.
Am I less dedicated than someone who writes full-time? Absolutely not! I am simply more focused. Because each and every minute counts, I never take my writing for granted, and I bet this is the case for you as well.
I’ve come to realize that the expression part-time actually means precious because my time is exactly that. So whatever activity I choose to do, it has to be a worthy one. Therefore, whoever I happen to write, translate, or librariate for should definitely feel special.
So, be proud of your part-time status and the next time anyone asks you what you do, claim your chosen careers with confidence!