Re: A contracting season

Subject: Re: A contracting season
From: Dan BRINEGAR <vr2link -at- VR2LINK -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 1997 06:36:00 -0700

Glad to see some good discussion stirred up by a side-topic of one of my
posts.... pleased to compare other's experiences.

For me, seems like it's been Tech Writing in the Spring, Tech Support in
the Fall, and McDonalds if I *really* screwed up by Winter <grin>

I haven't had to work at McDonalds in at least ten years, but with morning
grill operators making $7 an hour, and two McD's in walking distance, it
compares favourably to some tech support jobs commuting to the other end of
the Valley and workin' the phones...

But seriously folks, I was dimly aware of the cyclic nature of the trade
even before I started calling myself a techwriter... I just wasn't paying
attention to what Ol' Dad was saying as hiring manager, STC employment
chairman, and general guru till it was almost too late...

Got my first real contract in info development one November, and they only
started in November because they had grown-up kids of other developers
dying to do the job (like me) and a peripatetic contractor *still* looking
for a permanent job.

That lasted thru till October the next year, then I starved till January.
Picked up a six-month gig thru June, *really* starved till July when I got
alllll excited about an Internet Provider starting up in town... "oh, and
can ya catch the phones from time-to-time till we get a receptionist?"

For you folks just starting out; if you get a job like this remember that
they'll NEVER get a receptionist <smirk>.

It's kinda cool, tho, being senior Mac tech support, and night shift
supervisor (really!), you can learn alot and have fun feeling heroic about
your mission till ya lose yer car, and the house payment's lookin shakey.

Since then, tho, I haven't been out of work for more than a couple of days,
and the connections I made on the Net thought of me first when they needed
a techwriter.

* Save any money you can on every gig!

* Plan ahead! --Don't take a 90-day gig in June unless you have something
lined up after that --

* Never take a gig you'll hate doing, no matter how good the money: it'll
come down around yer ears during a lean time.

Best regards,

Dan BRINEGAR Information Developer/Research Droid/Mac Guy <--- Under Construction

"But, Moles, uh, that does not compute!"

djb -at- vr2link -dot- com

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