This is maybe the toughest question I have to answer, and it can’t be done today.
I am going to grad school for two reasons: I love literature, and there are no job prospects for me. I think it’s more of the latter than the former. See, if I had to choose between a magazine job and going to grad school, I would most likely pick the job. Despite my position as bitch-work-for-hire in the magazine world, I really like it. I enjoy keeping up with the PR for our mag, going on photo shoots, and of course, writing. If I could get a salary and benefits to do it? There’d be no stopping me.
But I’m not getting those jobs, and I’m not going to just sit on my ass and hope that things will change. Instead, I’m going back to the one constant in my life: school. Grad school will get me a current address outside Iowa, and force me to really live on my own for the first time in my life–which is reason enough to get my application on. But the question always is: what then? After one or two years in a master’s program, what do you want to do?
The answer: I don’t know. And damn it, I don’t have to, either! When I’m done, all I will be out is a large sum of money. But what I’m hoping to have, in return, is an idea of how to answer the question. Will I want to teach? Will I want to get a Ph.D? Will I go running back to magazines? Will I find myself at a literary journal (the best of both worlds)? Will I be selling Rosetta Stone at the mall?
I guess I’m answering a question with more questions, but I’ll have the answers eventually. For now, I’m hoping grad school will give me a little bit more of a glimpse into my future–and I’ll be crossing my fingers that, in the meantime, the freelance writing doesn’t have to end with a geographic relocation.