I signed a two-month Independent Consultant Agreement this morning to work for a start-up in San Carlos, California (for the Pirates fan.) Thus, four days a week, beginning March 8, I will be writing copy for the Web for this company and assisting in other SEO activities. The goal is that I become a full-time, salaried employee at the end, if all goes well. Regardless, I’m thrilled. In a sense, it makes these last few months worth it, hard as they’ve sometimes been.
I walked away from a well-paying sales job in November because it wasn’t an ideal fit. End of day, not everyone can cold call, especially in this economy. I struggled consistently my last few months on the job before quitting at the suggestion of my boss. I still think I made the right decision, but financially, it’s been tough. I left with little savings and have been unable to receive unemployment benefits, since I quit voluntarily. Thus, my folks have had to help me out a lot the last few months, which is humbling at 26. I learned an important lesson: Never quit a job unless you have another one lined up.
But if it’s been the Dark Ages for my bank account these last few months, it’s been the Renaissance for this site. After managing just a few posts a month towards the end of my sales job — shit posts at that — I suddenly found myself with time to write every day. Thus, I went to near-daily updates, and the number of visitors to this site tripled in the process. Google Analytics says I get 945 visitors a month right now; in November, I was getting 300. Granted, popular baseball blogs exceed in a day what I currently attract per month, but I feel I’m on my way to good things. I haven’t just been writing more. I also feel like I have been writing better.
The job search was definitely challenging. I left my sales position with a stated goal of writing more, but with that said, I wasn’t sure what field I would next work in. Thus, I considered everything from more sales work to online marketing to pouring coffee (I think I had a 24-hour stretch where I applied at three different Starbucks.) I have to say this new job seems like a great outcome. I like start-up culture, the company I’ll be working for seems cool and I’m excited to get to make a living writing. Writing doesn’t really seem like work to me, and I miss it when it’s not in my life.
The looming question, of course, is what impact my new job will have on this site. When I interviewed for the job, my boss made clear that if he brought me on as a salaried employee, it would be a 50-hour a week commitment. I figured it might effect the number of posts I write per week, as I’m currently doing about six. If I do go full-time, I wouldn’t be surprised if that number drops to three, though I will look to maintain the same caliber of writing. Were I to choose, I’d sooner sacrifice quantity than quality here. My rationale might be different if I had a different kind of site.
Anyhow, I want to thank everyone who had a hand in getting me this job. That includes the administrators who oversee me here. Were it not for this site, I doubt I would have been hired. I’m telling every journalism student I talk to from now on to start a blog, if they don’t have one already.