Home > Uncategorized, writing > don’t give up your day job

don’t give up your day job

I’ve landed myself a part-time job behind the bar of a very cool music venue and pub and I realised this is my first job to support my writing instead of writing being something that I do on the side of another career. It made me curious and I found out some interesting occupations that writers have had.

William Faulkner worked in a post office – until he was fired for reading on the job.

Haruki Murakami ran a jazz club until he started writing in his thirties.

J.D. Salinger worked in a meat-processing factory and then on a Caribbean cruise ship.

Franz Kafka worked for an insurance company.

Raymond Carver juggled writing and jobs as a hospital porter, textbook editor, dictionary salesman, petrol station attendant and deliveryman.

William S. Burroughs was a pest controller and a private detective.

Mary Gaitskill was a stripper.

Phillip K. Dick worked in a record store and briefly as a disk jockey.

There aren’t many writers and artists out there that can live off their craft alone, some continue to work even after fame and success.

Do you work a day job? I’d be interested in hearing what people do to do the thing they love.

  1. Sheamus
    February 17, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    I sit at a computer and enter data as you know, but the best part about this job is that during the frequent not too busy times I can actually do creative things while being paid at work. If I can drag myself away from facebook and music forums and blogs for long enough that is.

  2. February 17, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    I where a suit for a living and spend most of my day on a computer doing boring Finance stuff for big fat peeps who earn too much money.

    • February 17, 2010 at 5:08 pm

      And in your ‘spare’ time you work within an organisation supplying food and shelter to homeless and sick children in Kenya? Man, that’s quite the contrast.

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