Xtina's lowdown on "real" jobs
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
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.