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Thread: How can I make a living from doing something reasonably interesting?

  1. #1
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    Default How can I make a living from doing something reasonably interesting?

    Serious question.

    "It's basically impossible unless you're either interesting in boring things or outrageously lucky" is an acceptable answer, although one that's already occurred to me, obviously.
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    I wouldn't mind so much if all areas of human endeavour were like professional sports, in which success is very largely proportional to some kind of product of natural flair and effort put in. You're never going to be a famous (let alone rich) footballer if you're shit at football. Some guys might get more ancillary sponsorship work if they happen to charismatic, good-looking or whatever but someone who can't kick a ball and gets tired after five minutes of running around is never going to play for MUFC.

    But what kills me is that we live in a world in which Katie Hopkins is a successful columnist, E. L. James is a successful novelist and Daniel Radcliffe is a successful actor. And Michael Gove is a cabinet MP!
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    I thought you had a good career designing ballistic missiles in cool European cities?

  4. #4
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    You could get a job that allows you to do *something else* that's interesting while you're at work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by craner View Post
    I thought you had a good career designing ballistic missiles in cool European cities?
    Lol!

  7. #6

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    Start with what you're interested in and go from there.

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    Or start with something you know little about and, having learnt on the job, either then find it interesting or find discovering its uninterestingness interesting - "Who would have thought that captaining a team to its first Champions League triumph would have occasioned such ennui" - and leave to repeat the process.

    The more ignorant you are of the particulars of your prospective role, the better; be prepared to convey supremely confident indifference at the interview stage.
    Last edited by mixed_biscuits; 30-03-2016 at 08:21 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by vimothy View Post
    Start with what you're interested in and go from there.
    Aaaargh! Come on man, is that meant to be helpful? My problem is I'm interested in far too many things. I'm a dilettante. Really, the way to be successful at most kinds of jobs is to be very good at one specific thing and not interested in other stuff, not very intelligent, even. Being interested in stuff just means you get bored quickly with the same thing over and over, which means being bored in about 99% of jobs.

    And if you mean "interested in" in the sense of "enjoy doing" - well, I love the idea of making a living by writing short stories and/or knocking out tunes in Ableton, but honestly. It's 2016 and I'm 35 years old. It's not going to happen, is it?

    Edit: if it achieves nothing else, at least this thread has awoken mixed_biscuits from his aeon-long slumber. Alright mate! How's things?
    Last edited by Mr. Tea; 30-03-2016 at 08:37 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Tea View Post
    Edit: if it achieves nothing else, at least this thread has awoken mixed_biscuits from his aeon-long slumber. Alright mate! How's things?
    Alright chap! Things are all well and good

  11. #10
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    Glad to hear it. I'm OK too, I guess, just a bit unthrilled about being out of work again and seeing all these fucking jobs ads that start with "Do you have a passion for .... ?!?!?!" like an excitable Labrador puppy that's trying to hump your leg, and thinking "No of course I fucking don't, you'd have to be a lunatic to be 'passionate' about any of that bollocks."
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  12. #11

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    Wait, Mr Tea, from what I can gather you have advanced scientific (or mathematical or something) training. Are you saying there's nothing more interesting you could do with that than write short stories? I mean, it's different for us Humanities graduates, lumbered with useless degrees that offer no realistic or interesting career prospects outside of teaching or publishing.

  13. #12

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    MI6 are hiring. They've put ads in The Guardian.

    I once answered an ad for MI5 from the back of The Times, and got through to Round 2 of 6. It's a good story that I often tell at parties. I was too thick to get past Round 2, thankfully. But Round 2 was absolutely fascinating.

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    I can suggest some depressing but interesting reading if you are interested? Lanier's "Who Owns the Future?" and "Deep Work" by Cal Newport. The former suggests we are all fucked so should design a system that insists on basic restitution from big companies for sharing our information (good luck with that), the latter identifying an exclusive skill that's in demand and working hard at it. Weirdly enough I read the first chapter of this on Google books the other day and he's banging the same drum which is weird, but interesting for an occult book. His solution is to become a chaos magician which maybe a career shift too far for you.

    My partner said something interesting recently (not implying this has a one off - she says interesting stuff literally all the time, but this was germane to the topic in hand) - we are most of us, only 10 years or so into our careers. We have maybe another 20-30 years to go so now is the time to think about retraining and considering your options (this is part of my reasoning behind starting an MA this year).

    Otherwise, start agitating for Basic Income?

    Edit - the first chapter of that book is very good actually, well worth reading. Which is not something I would say about 99% of occult books.
    Last edited by DannyL; 30-03-2016 at 08:57 PM.

  15. #14
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    If everyone made a living doing what they are interested in, who would do all the boring shitty jobs?

  16. #15
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    [QUOTE=craner;323140realistic or interesting career prospects outside of teaching or publishing.[/QUOTE]

    With the first of these career avenues rapidly being made more worse and worse.

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