A bit of background

The story so far…

So, at some stage I became unemployed. I’m not sure exactly when it happened. Maybe it was when I submitted my last invoice for the last moderately-sized job I did. Maybe it was when I let my Travelcard expire as there was no longer a need to go into town. Maybe it was realising that I had forgotten what I used to wear when I didn’t wear jeans and Converse every day. Maybe it was after the school holidays when a falling off of childcare duties exposed just how few formal (ie financially remunerated) tasks had appeared to replace them. Maybe it was when 10 jobs that a year ago I’d have been over-qualified for failed to dignify me with so much as an email ‘Soz!’ Whatever the exact moment, my status has somehow changed from happy-go-lucky freelance to full-on, down-and-out unemployed.

And there was  a lot of it about. According to the Labour Market Statistical bulletin for September 2009, there were at least 2.47  million of us – an impressive 7.9% of the population and rising – indeed more, because of course the self employed, careers, mothers looking to get back into the labour market, and other such groups are not included in this figure.

Luckily, since those dark days, things have started looking up, at least on the freelance journalism front (less so if you work in the public sector who are experiencing the same thing two years behind the private sector). Now I just struggle with the challenges and cultural peculiarities of being a homeworker.

Perhaps you have stumbled across this blog looking for guidance, a step-by-step guide to how to get a job, a self-help manual for coping with the alienation, the demoralisation, the boredom, the poverty and the sheer lack of self-worth inflicted by something as basic as not having a job.

Sadly, this is not the place to look.

It may be that some posts end up being accidentally useful – if I come across any useful tips, I will of course share them (that is, unless they are editing jobs where I could do without the competition). It may be that one or two are interesting. It may be that one or two inspire you to go somewhere or do something with your day other than checking the jobs websites and realising you can’t even apply for that job at Greggs because it specifies previous experience in catering.

  1. There a lot of unemployed people because companies are hiring idiots. This applies to all industries. Maybe they are cheaper… or easier to handle… whatever it is, the able & intelligent ones are getting the short end of the stick. I think entrepreneurship is the way to go. You get to be your own boss, and if things go well, u can hire your own team of idiots to train into robots.

  2. Hi,

    I can totally emphathise. Here’s one of my experience at cadging a writing job. http://bit.ly/7ExnJK

    But your blog is great.

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