How About Just Don’t Do What You Hate?
Award-winning cartoonist turned front-end developer Rachel Nabors writes for Medium about (NOT) doing what you love. Her amended advice: Don’t do something you hate for a living.
I don’t like advice like “Do what you love and the money will follow.” Not because it isn’t true, but because it’s a monkey’s paw: it’s true under the right circumstances with the right people, and for everyone else, it’s just bad advice.
I used to make comics for a living= and I gave out similar advice and professed similar goals: If I just tried hard enough, I’d make it doing what I love, making comics for a living. If anyone was less successful then I was, well, they must not have been trying hard enough.
To an extent it worked! I won awards, had hordes of fan girls, a weekly syndicated web comic I got paid for (very well by comic industry standards, too). I thought I was doing great doing what I love.
And then it all ended.
I needed surgery.
And I didn’t have health insurance.
When Nabors had to get surgery, she shut down her comics blog and started working in web development, which she’s now been doing for five years. These days, she’s happy, at the top of her game, and starting her second company. She says she can make more money in a weekend than she would make working 60-hour weeks drawing comics.
We rarely hear the advice of the person who did what they loved and stayed poor or was horribly injured for it. Professional gamblers, stuntmen, washed up cartoonists like myself: we don’t give speeches at corporate events. We aren’t paid to go to the World Domination Summit and make people feel bad. We don’t land book deals or speak on Good Morning America.
Photo via flickr