I Hope I Get It: getting your act together to work independently

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(Taken from Tampa Bay Times, John Fleming, January 2009)

Job hunting is tough.

I mean, we all want to be Top Dog. We all want to get our feet wet.  And all told the same:

Fill out application, resume, and cover letter.

And all of this describes you as a being of essence, and to the company, whether you are worthy of meeting said company or not.

For the past two years since out of college, I worked odd jobs, interned at various amazing companies, put my neck out to compose and strive to find my one voice, my calling.  In the meantime, I filled out possibly over 50 different variations of a resume and over 200 cover letters.  I wanted the music industry. I wanted all it took, but each time I filled out a new cover letter, I kept that song from A Chorus Line, “I Hope I Get It” in my head.  I knew I want it, but how badly did this job that hundreds of other music industry go-ers were applying to, want me?

Will I make it?  Do they like me? I really blew it? I think it went well!  All of these thoughts are always in my head and driving me through the process of applying, a possibly interview, and then a void of silence or a rejection letter.

But I still wanted it. I recently made a decision that I wanted it so badly, that it is time for the following steps:

  • Create a client base for marketing artists (which involves, of course, contract writing, promoting said artists, making negotiations, etc.)
  • Compose for films that I finally commissioned to write for! Holy cow this is happening
  • Panic that I am doing this on my own
  • Get over the panic and enjoy the ride.
  • Know I am doing this to make it further in the ever-crazy, busy music industry

It has taken me two years to realize that from what I wanted in the beginning makes sense, but implementing all of this is a task in itself. To work independently, you must think as an independent person, but at the same time, still have that mentality that you are among many co-workers in the industry.  Whether networking, discussing publishing with contacts, setting meeting times to talk to clients while scheduling composing/recording time, or even making it a point to have a group session to discuss the various processes involved.

I still am filling out resumes and writing cover letters, because I do want to move out and save up for possibly grad school or going abroad.  However, what being independent has taught me thus far, is that I do not have to sing in my head “I Hope I Get It” constantly, because i am sure that I am getting it, because for once, I am not competing to have a job that I am unsure of how much I want, because I have it!  Making money is another story of patience and strife, but by gum, it is slowly working.

This isn’t for everyone.  Not everyone swims up the same river, but for those who feel lost out there, take the plunge.  Network. Find what makes your calling independently. Get out there and do, not be, because standing in a line across the stage (figuratively speaking, visa vie the A Chorus Line Metaphor), and that is okay.  Because you are what makes you!

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