Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I Guess This Is Growing Up

So, I’m having somewhat of a quarter life crisis. Not a major one, but it’s definitely got me thinking.

Since the time I realized that I liked to write, and that I was good at it too, I’ve wanted to be a journalist. I fell in love with the idea of using my writing to confront injustice, to motivate change, and to show compassion for those who deserve it. The summer before my senior year at Assumption I worked as an intern at The Sun Chronicle, a daily newspaper in Attleboro. That was my first real taste of life as a journalist, and it only further ensured me that I had found my calling. From then on, it was decided that I would be the voice for the voiceless, the inspirer of advancement, the truth.

A tad bit (okay, fine, a lot bit) romanticized, I know. But I also know that I can make a difference in this world, and I can’t think of a better use for words than to do just that.

The older I get though, making a difference in my life seems all the more important than making a difference in the world. I used to get mad at my mom when she would voice her concerns over the salary and stability of my chosen field. When you’re a kid, none of those things matter yet. But now, as scary as it may be, I’m beginning to see her side of things, and they matter.

I’ve always been a firm believer that I’d rather struggle a little bit financially and love what I do than live comfortably and hate my job. I still believe that. But what if I could have the best of both worlds?

This summer my brother John and sister-in-law Heather started a lending company in Portland, Maine. A prime opportunity for the both of us, I’ve been doing some PR work for them writing website content, keeping up with their blog, and managing their Facebook and Twitter. And I gotta admit, I like it. The more I think about it (thinking is always my downfall) being a public relations writer seems like a more realistic career choice for me.

There’s no denying that right now, journalism ain’t doin’ too well. It’s nearly impossible (actually, it may be straight-up impossible) to find a full-time job as a journalist on salary with benefits. Not that I want to rush my life by any means, but a highly demanding job with low pay and crazy deadlines makes having any type of family life, or any life at all, quite the task.

As a public relations writer I could still use my writing to make a positive change in the world too, which is a critical aspect of job satisfaction for me. If I worked for an organization that I have faith in, such as Bread for the World or the Jimmy Fund, I would still be writing to promote a meaningful cause, rather than just a private agenda. Then I could be doing good deeds and helping others as a 9 to 5 job, not just when the story breaks.

On top of that, I’ve been told more than once that I have a public relations spin to my writing. I’m just a big fan of adjectives. I like to talk things up. So why not put it to use?

Lots to consider, I tell ya. Good thing I have some time.