First my dad wanted me to be an anesthesiologist. Then he backed his wish down to nurse anesthetist. Eventually it was, how about just a regular nurse?
The closer I got to enrolling in journalism school, he was practically begging me to do anything else. There was no money in it, he told me. But I didn't care. I wanted to write. And four years later, when I accepted an entry level sportswriter job, the $26,000 annual salary seemed like more money than I could ever spend.
It didn't take long before I realized that Dad was right. A writing career isn't especially lucrative. Especially not for most 22-year-olds.
I had to scrimp. I got by on Campbell's Chunky for a while. I found some really professional-looking shirts at the secondhand store. I discovered that if you filled your tank at night, the cool air would contract the gas molecules and you could get more mileage for your buck. (Don't quote me on the science behind that theory. There's a reason I didn't become an anesthesiologist.)
Eventually I got pretty tired of "The Soup That Eats Like a Meal." Never mind wanting more money, I needed more. Student loan and credit card payments were eating me alive.
And then one day, miraculously, a friend at another company needed help on a project, and I discovered freelance writing-my first side hustle. It's a wonder that they don't teach classes about freelancing in...