Wednesday, January 8, 2014

working vs. "not"

Have you ever been "gainfully unemployed"?  I have, a few times in my life.  I am currently unemployed, and gainfully so in that I am blessed to collect unemployment insurance benefits ("UI").  I'm required by the agency that distributes my money to twice look for work every week that I collect.  No problem.  If my unemployment weren't "gainful", I'd have to spend every available moment looking for work, because I'd need to create real income right away.  This was our case when we first moved to the wrong coast, and Stephen had to find a job.  In the current job market, it is incredibly demoralizing to have to put applications in for positions for which you are overqualified but would probably thrive in, only to never hear back or not succeed in the pre-qualifying test you take online.  Just about all applications for "real world" work are online these days, and most come with a test.  You never get to hand a resume to a PERSON anymore, or even a filled-out-by-hand application!  Some jobs still do it the old-school way, but those jobs are few and far between.  If we are judged solely on how well (or poorly) we guess at the answers to "how would you handle this particular situation?" before we've learned the policies of the company asking the question, how can we possibly feel good about ourselves in our earnest quest for a fulfilling position?  We don't just work for money; job satisfaction is key to continuing the work.

My preferred industry, film and television (entertainment), doesn't work that way, thankfully.  There are referrals and meetings and emails and phone calls, and if you have any experience doing the job you want, you've got a resume and a listing on the Internet Movie Database (IMDb).  If you don't have experience for the job you want, then you either pay a tech school for some training, or you take a few unpaid ("intern") positions, or you go back to your "network" so you can get referrals and meetings and emails and phone calls.

This week, I intend to book a gig.

  • As of yesterday, I've been submitted by my agent for two commercials (neither of which I even got the audition for, but still - the "look for work" requirement is fulfilled right there).  
  • Today, I submitted myself as a PA for two days in-state, just to get myself back on set.  I'm overqualified to be a PA, and I don't have a network on the wrong coast, so whenever I submit for a PA gig, it feels like a shot in the dark.  At least with THESE online submissions, the part of the "demoralizing" equation, the personality test, is missing.  You still at least hear back from them in some way; "your resume has been viewed" or "job poster hired someone else."  It's fine.  
  • In addition to the acting and PA submissions, I've just learned that a wonderful production that put plenty of money in my UI coffers has been "picked up" for a second season.  That SHOULD mean that they haven't shot it yet.  It SHOULD mean that I'm in the running to do the same job I did in the first season.  It SHOULD mean that the email messages I've sent, and the "positivity" vibe I'm trying to rock, will result in more emails and phone calls, and that I'll BOOK this gig and get to go home to California before the deadline we've set for our household move!

I AM currently "gainfully" unemployed, but I would SO LOVE to be gainfully EMPLOYED before my UI runs out.  I'd love to be in the position that I have Things I Wish To Say (here, on my blog) but no time in which to get them spilled out of my brain into my keyboard.  I don't MIND "not" working, but I'm not a lazy bum or anything.  I DO want to be working again, in a fulfilling position on a film crew, doing a job I do well, and being paid commensurate to my experience.  And SOON.  Yes.  Let me rock this positivity vibe!  I will BOOK something THIS WEEK!


  1. You go girl! You will most definitely be on set very soon (my fortune cookie prediction for you) ;-)

    1. I JUST NOW submitted for another (even more local) PA gig. Thanks for contributing to my positivity vibe. I'm glad you have safely arrived. :D


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