Taiwan

Work update

Ever since secondary (high) school, I’ve felt like time goes by so fast. Whether that’s such a good thing though, that’s another matter. Anyways these past few months have been like a blur. From being involved in journalism for over two years (not as lofty as it sounds), from being in a kind of professional limbo, doing a mix of part-time and freelance (one story) work that even involved correcting literally over a thousand high school essays, I managed to get a regular 9-6.30 (this is Taiwan, so no 9-5 here) office job. It’s in a more formal workplace in a big company but it has nothing to do with journalism. I’m still technically on trial so I still need to keep my fingers crossed and keep on working hard. Nevertheless, if things work out, my journalism days will be well behind me (at least for now and the near future). I feel a little twinge of sadness now and then, gratitude at what I was actually able to do (as little as it was), but also definitely regret that I couldn’t have done more. There comes a time when one needs to face the facts and be realistic with career and professional options. The journalism dream, or should I say, daydream, hasn’t been erased from my mind and in future, who knows what could happen. I still think about my last workplace with a mix of emotions. Anytime you’ve worked somewhere for over two years and been able to be given certain opportunities and freedoms that would be hard by to come upon elsewhere, there’s definitely reason to be grateful. On the other hand, my time was filled with a lot of craziness with some things that while reminiscing about now I can laugh a bit, but at the actual time felt like, let’s just say, no laughing matter. From a six-day work week, which ironically was changed to five just a couple of months after I changed to part-time, to the late hours that regularly ended after midnight (which was good for doing things during the day like dentist appointments or grocery shopping, but wears on you after a while), to the ever-changing rotation of coworkers, interns and bosses. To be honest, it was the time itself that was a strong factor in me not wanting to do the job too much and hence, not accepting an offer to return full-time on the now normal 5-day work week. Well actually it was that plus the burden of doing an extra job for no extra pay and hardly any extra time. By extra job, I don’t mean an extra task but an entirely separate job from copy editing that was equivalent to that of an extra half-week’s worth of work. But I don’t shy away from extra work and I carried this double duty for 9 months, which is why my list of published articles is filled with a multitude of book reviews (not the Asia Review ones for which I got compensated with the actual books I reviewed and open-ended deadlines- as in send it in when you’ve finished the book). Working at a newspaper, especially THAT one, was quite good though and might lead to a post in the future.

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