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Do you cherish your writing career?

Writing is a craft and a profession, but it can also be a delight. Do you adore or abhor your work? Is writing a pleasure for you, or is it a plodding exercise in plunking out publishable prose?

Confucius, an oft-quoted ancient Chinese philosopher, said this about career choices:

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

Do you agree or disagree?

Is this pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking, or is it actually possible to love one’s job? As writers, what can we do to ensure we enjoy our employment? What tips or strategies make it feasible for wordsmiths to choose career paths we love and to retain our relishing of our chosen endeavors?

Clearly, certain achievements rekindle a wordsmith’s passion for his or her profession.

Some writers rejoice to find their words published in print or online. Others are intrigued by receiving inside information, press passes, and access to unshared stories and yet-unseen secrets. A journalist, in particular, tends to experience exhilaration at being the first to break a bit of news to the world. (I've been there, and it's a blast.)

And, hey, it's fun to interview famous folks. Honestly, I feel a little like Forrest Gump sometimes, when I enjoy opportunities to interview individuals I admire. Often, I wonder, "Why me?" At the same time, I love to find out how such folks are simply regular people who happen to lead unusually interesting lives.

Still more may be blessed by bylines, writing awards, or other professional recognitions. 

Personally, I still gain inspiration and energy when I peruse my past portfolio of prized publications. Hey, it's fun to have a headline in The Christian Science Monitor or Business Week. It's a blast to find out USA Today or The Chicago Tribune has linked to an article on the publisher's website. I even smile to stick my pens and pencils into my AC Page View Millionaire mug, which I received a few years ago to mark  my first one million readers on the old Associated Content website.

The most altruistic among us find reward in the knowledge that the words they pen may benefit others.

Certainly, it’s not all about the money. Is it?

Money matters for sure, and few professional writers are willing to put pen to paper around the clock for free. But a real writer is likely to persist in producing publishable work, whether that pursuit is paid or not.

We journal. We dream into diaries. We reflect and reminisce and even rhyme. Writers simply write. It's who we are. Maybe we can't help ourselves. The trick is to find ways to earn livelihoods in our lifelong love of words.

If you are a writer, what is the best highlight you can recall in your own career?

Please share your story to encourage other writers. Leave a comment,  or share a link to your own related article or post.

Relaxing in the Field by Onderwijsgek
Creative Commons Licensing/Wikipedia Commons Photos
Tang Dynasty Portrait of Confucius
Public Domain Artwork/Copyright Expired
AC Page View Millionnaire Mug 
Photo by Linda Ann Nickerson/Nickers and Ink Creative Communications
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  1. Love my writing career. Some days I love it more than others :D

  2. I'm hoping to make writing a career, but haven't succeeded yet. I've received honorable mentions from the FFWA every year I've entered that contest. I've received positive remarks from two publishers in NY (but no offer.) Those were highlights for me. I write b/c it feeds my soul. Money and accolades would be nice, of course, but I'd prefer my words touch another soul, encourage them, help them somehow. I would like to have an impact. I might be too idealistic. :-)

  3. Guess you can say working in PR is writing - which is what I do - while finding time for blogging and freelance writing on the side. Biggest writing accomplishment has been having some of my essays published in a travel anthology about Japan. A writing career is definitely about the long tail and being persistent and consistent.


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