When Is "Good" Good Enough?

This is not a post about unemployment, or my job hunt, or aptitude tests, or what I want to be when I grow up. I am sick to death of thinking of nothing but all of that for the past week, and if I'm sick of it, I know you are too. So, to recap...not a post about the job (or lack thereof).

Well, okay, maybe a little.

But only to set the stage.

My transition coordinator thinks that I should be a corporate blogger. He says there is a need for companies to have people write their blogs because, 1) they don't have time to do it themselves, and 2) they do it badly when they try. So he thinks that because I write this here blog, those "skills" (and I use the term lightly...very lightly) should translate over.

Problem solved. Never mind the man has never read a single word that I've written.

On the one hand, part of me thinks this is a compliment. I mean, this guy has no proof that I'm ANY good whatsoever, but he seems to think that I could at least squeak out a living doing it. On the other hand, this guy has no proof that I'm any good whatsoever, so who is he to decide that this would be anything other than unmitigated disaster?

So my question to you, dear readers, (and this is really the point of the entire post...not the job or even blogging in general) is how good do you have to be at something to make a living out of it?* How do you know what is a career and what should just remain a hobby? Because I have no official training as a writer. And other than a bazillion case studies for school and the mindless dribbling you see here, I have no experience. And while part of me would LOVE to get paid to blog all day (Hello? Who wouldn't?), part of me quakes at the idea of just not being good enough.

So what's the cutoff between selling everything you own and heading to Hollywood to follow your dreams, and being content to sing karaoke in your basement?

(*By the way, while I love the comments where you encourage me and tell me I'm wonderful and you love me, you really really love me, please don't see this post as an attempt to have you stroke my fragile ego. I'm asking on a more universal sense. How do any of us know that we're good enough to do anything? Of course, if you insist on a teeny bit of ego stroking, who am I to stop you?)


Meg-o said...

This is something I've struggled with as well. I'm a stay-at-home mom and am constantly looking for something I could do to earn a little extra income. I've toyed with several ideas but never can convince myself that I'm good enough to actually pursue any of them.

I think that my biggest problem is self-doubt and the fact that I can't stand the idea of doing anything at a mediocre level. I want to be the best or nothing at all. Please don't think I'm suggesting that you share my neurotic little problems.

The advice I would give myself, though (if I would only listen, darn me), is to just go for it. Jump in and see what happens. And if it doesn't work out for whatever reason, lick your wounds and move on to the next idea. At least that's one thing you won't have to wonder about anymore.

Meanwhile... I enjoy your blog and think you have a great writing style even if you haven't had any real training or experience. There's your tiny little ego stroke :c)

db said...

Hmmm.... not qualified? Don't have any real writing experience or training? Puh-leeeez. Writing is the only real writing experience there is, and you do that often. Not only do you write, but people actually read what you write, which makes you not only a writer, but a successful writer.
I say do it. Why not? If it sucks and you hate it, it's just a blog, right? Hey, I quit my blog at least once a week! Hehe.
DO. IT. The only thing you can do is fail, and hey, we all do that, so it would only make you human like the rest of us. Welcome to our world!

tootie said...

First, I think you are a great blogger. Really.

Second, I think that you should try it out. Why not? The worst thing that would happen is that you wouldn't get the job. And if you did get the job and didn't like it, you could always quit.

So my humble vote is - give it a shot! You'll never know, if you don't try.