Hobby != Profession

September 20, 2009

I would hate to be a writer…

See, I love writing… whether it be the odd poem (not in a long time, but it has happened), my latest blog entry or a vague storyline for something (game or otherwise). But boy do I struggle to get there… I have nothing but admiration for those that choose to make writing in any shape or form their careers.

Over the past few days I have been trying to think of something vaguely interesting to write, however that ugly beast known as ‘Writers Block’ chose to rear its ugly head. Thankfully I dont have my entries due by a deadline (god forbid), and I tend to write when I actually feel like writing. This writers block got me thinking… How many times do you look at something and think ‘Wow I would love to do that as my career!’ ?

What sparked this entry was a conversation with my better half, a week or so ago. We were talking about cooking, and food in general (we both share a passion of cooking), and Fran said she would love to be able to make a career out of cooking, because she loves it so much. While I understand the sentiment, I pointed out the fact that when she cooks, she cooks for genuine pleasure and most certainly doesnt have 30+ people in a single kitchen yelling back and forth with the noise of 40+ dishes being cooked at a time…

I know that Im just as guilty of this, as my retirement dream is to own a cafe, due to my all-consuming, overpowering obsession with that glorious black gold known as coffee. I love making coffee, drinking coffee, and thinking about coffee. To the point where I stumbled across a coffee magazine, dedicated to that aromatic, diminuitive little bean, and its everything I ever dreamed of in a magazine about coffee. Im going to stop talking about coffee now, because my fingers are starting to run away with themselves, and if left unchecked I could talk about it for hours…

Ahem…

As I was saying, I have also fallen into this mindset, where I think that hobby = profession. While there are situations where this does happen (and usually these people are the most renowned in their respective fields), most of the time, we ‘common’ people dont truly understand the blood, sweat and even tears that go into running a respective business. I have no freaking clue how hard it is to run a cafe, but from what Ive seen I realise that its not what you would call a ‘calm’ profession.

I think the turning point for someone truly turning their passion or hobby into a real profession is the point where they truly realise what they are getting themselves into, and still want to do it. To know how badly they are going to get screwed around, precisely how many stomach ulcers they will recieve in the process of realising their dream, and most importantly: how much money they stand to lose (not to mention things of a personal nature; marriage, relationships and friendships). Money doesnt grow on trees, and the costs in setting up a business can sometimes set you back years before you start making an actual profit… But if your passion (read: obsession) is powerful enough, nothing can stop you.

So next time you see something on TV/in a magazine/at the movies, and have a knee-jerk reaction of ‘wow, Id love to do that as my career’, think to yourself…

How many stomach ulcers can you survive?

 

Note: If you are wondering what the != means in the title its a programming expression that means ‘does not equal’.