They say be careful what you wish for. Many of my friends and family have heard me lament about my unfulfilled desire to be a writer. I like to go on about how I was once a Poet-in-Residence, how I always scored very highly on the verbal section of standardized tests, how I was meant to write. Well, now’s my chance.
Through unanticipated acts of fate, I find myself in a position where my only real opportunity to make money is through ghost writing of business blogs at meager rates. Oh, joy! Can anything good come of it?
Maybe. As I did with the senior entertainment business last year, I have begun to develop my own system of tracking my business activities and setting business goals. At least with the writing business, I do not have the major expense of transportation. I am embarrassed to say what I will be paid for my work, but I have written five posts since I started again yesterday evening, and one of them has already been accepted. I suppose I should be able to manage minimum wage for now. (To improve the income I could either try to write faster or find more favorable rates.) I’m convinced that I’m worth a lot more.
I once read of an aspiring journalist who complained to his editor about having to write obituaries. The seasoned veteran corrected the young man by explaining to him how important these pieces were to the families of the deceased, and how there was a certain skillful art required to do them well. I’m sure I could convince myself that boring business blogs have some secret value that, if I gave it some thought, I would learn to appreciate. Right.
Today I found myself spending more time doing research than writing. I learned about the benefits of distance education so that I could write a post called “Remote Learning Solutions Can Transform Your Business”. I spent an hour preparing and writing “Five Reasons You Should Consider IT Outsourcing”. It took me over two hours to teach myself enough about work productivity to write a piece called “IT Professionals and Work Performance”. This evening I left off after reading for forty-five minutes about how to write an investment thesis. It all seems dry and colorless, lifeless, and without soul.
I wonder if that is how the first writers felt some 5,000 years ago. The earliest uses of cuneiform writing in ancient Mesopotamia were related to such mundane subjects as agricultural accounting or the manufacture of temple goods. How many cows did Farmer Brown trade for how many bushels of grain from Farmer Smith? Creative writing came much later than bookkeeping.
I guess that shows where people’s priorities are. The internet is replete with articles on topics like “How to Be a Successful Blog Writer”, or “10 Ways to Improve Your Small Business”. Readers want to know how to get ahead more than they want to plumb the depths of metaphysical reality. Economics trumps art every time. And that gives me such a thrill. Oh, joy. Oh joy oh joy oh joy!