October 9 , 2003  
Volume 97, Issue 24   

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Xtina's lowdown on "real" jobs

Double latte
Kristina Lundbald

Gazette Staff

My first job out of university (in my field and other than in a bar) was at The Gazette, as last year's deputy editor. Although it was "technically" my first real job, the paycheque I received could hardly support my "real job" claim and I still went to campus everyday. I still felt like a student; I just didn't go to classes.

It wasn't until after my position ended in May that my search for a real job began. A post-grad college program never appealed to me, mainly because I hated the idea of going to classes again. I also had a ton of practical experience from my Gazette days, so I didn't feel I needed that practical edge college offers.

I moved back home to St. Catharines just days after my Gazette contract ended and officially started my job search, mainly in book or magazine publishing. Searching for a job can be stressful enough, but add the pressure of your parents looking over your shoulder and the whole process can become unbearable. I opted to do most of my searching at the library.

During this time, I did freelance writing for a publishing company based in St. Catharines, which produces non-fiction children's books. I absolutely loved the work I did for them, but they didn't have any full-time positions available. Wanting more stability than freelancing can offer, I made the decision to pack up and move to Toronto, where most publishing houses are based, to continue my job search.

There, I went to Starbucks every morning to read the paper, started watching two soap operas instead of one and put out resumes somewhere in between. Looking for a job without the stress of my parents in a new, exciting place was great. It was a fun and relaxing time, one I felt I needed (maybe deserved?) after my time in university. At least that's how I justified those carefree days to myself.

Two weeks ago, after being in Toronto for only three months, I got offered a full-time position in book publishing. The catch? The position was at that same St. Catharines-based company, starting immediately. I asked myself if I really wanted to leave the big city and move back to my hometown. Yes, I decided I wanted this job more than anything and it didn't matter where it was based. I took the job because this is what's best for my career right now -and it doesn't have to be forever.

So, now I'm back where I started. But I didn't move back in with my parents. To go along with my new career and basically, this new chapter of my life, I got my own apartment. I'm already swamped with work, but loving every minute of it. I think I've officially made the transition into the adult, working world.

Compared to most, my job search was pretty easy. I didn't search for months on end, getting more depressed as time passed. In fact, it was quite painless. And now that search is over -at least for now.






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