Download “Second-Hand Dreams”, a short story.
Browsing: Working in Canada (and elsewhere…)
Last September’s tornado acted as a premonitory allegory of fall.
I’m a freelancer. Not only there’s no guarantee I’ll get assignments, but there’s always a small risk I won’t be paid. Illegal, sure, but who’s looking forward to a legal battle?
Maybe it’s not too late to pick up another harmless activity—knitting? Rock climbing? Blogg—oh, never mind.
Here I am, very candidly asking for your help. The stats tell me this blog receives about 1,000 visits a day. Maybe you work next door to a publisher, maybe you’ve heard of a publisher accepting non-solicited manuscripts, maybe you know an agent.
I had sent a query to this publisher last October. I knew the email wasn’t going to bring me joy but closure.
I know that despite hard work, chances of socially acceptable success are slim.
If there’s one lesson I learned over the past few years, it’s that when people offer help, you just take it.
It’s only now, as I’m querying publishers, that I realize I may have missed a crucial step in the process.
Do you know that moment when you put your iPod on shuffle mode and start questioning your taste in music? Editing your own prose feels like that.
It’s like being 16 again and expecting a text or a phone call from a crush—except I’m 34 and I’m waiting for work assignments.
Who am I to grow impatient with a publisher? Oh yeah, I know why. Because of Quiznos.
What happens after you send a query letter? You can either use hard data on hand to figure out if you stand a chance or create several scenarios in your head.
The different jobs I had taught me practical skills but also provided numerous clues to decipher Canadian culture.
I bought three bamboo stalks for good luck. Then, on my way home, I realized that the woman who had sold them to me was whiter than me and could have made up the “Chinese good luck” part.
“Oh, an unsolicited query letter! Awesome, I needed something to clean up the coffee I’ve just spilled.”
This is the starting point. I have a completed work of fiction and I want it to be read. On one side, the manuscript, finished. On the other… the jungle.
This summer, I’m celebrating the six-year anniversary of my company, Maple World Translation. I’m still a full-time freelancer and despite the ups and downs, I love my status.
I’m familiar with the resume-writing exercise. I’ve seen it all, from professional list of accomplishments on glossy paper to handwritten resumes (!).
For years, I advised immigrants who couldn’t find a job right away to give staffing agencies a call, at least to gain work experience in Canada. Today, I’m not sure I would give such advice.
The supermarket had closed an hour earlier, it was empty but you could still smell the usual Saturday rush complete with overexcited kids running around, products spilled in aisles and cheques being written for a week worth of groceries.
I can’t stress it enough—having people willing to act as a reference and vouch for your work skills and personal qualities is often the best job-search weapon you can have.
I busted five myths about freelancing, it’s now time to highlight the perks. Eh, I’m not a masochist, there is a reason why I quit my last office job!