Employment Counselling and Jobs vs. Career

My self-employment business advisor is still optimistic that http://ourmus.net (a collaborative community for music history & culture) can move forward and be successful in making me some income.  However, music scholars probably think that the way they do things (peer review, committees, etc.) actually works properly and that something also directed towards the public would not be sufficiently academic.  Meanwhile, the music-interested public would probably find the site too academic.  A “happy medium” may not be possible.  My self-employment coordinator (different from my advisor) got me an unrelated appointment with an Employment Ontario job developer.  However, that person has not really been of any use to me, probably because my background (in academia, music, and IT) doesn’t fit the types of jobs and employers she encounters.

I’m also now enrolled in an individualized job-search program.  The employment counsellor for that (actually a friend from my past!) and I concluded that I should do my academic work, music-making, and IT/website activities on the side (“evenings and weekends”).  For employment, I should use my local network outside of those areas to find some other type of work.  The areas of work I have in mind could be in administrative assistance (at a business, social service agency, church, or school), arts admin (at a museum, library, or performance organization), retail (such as technology, musical instrument, and/or other music-related sales), or publishing (editing, web content, etc.).  I have some people advising me in those employment directions, as well.

Meanwhile, I’m now lined up to do a book proposal for a “listener guide” about Rush’s music.  So, hopefully that project will move ahead.  The editors involved are both fans of Rush’s music, so that helps!  In addition, four out of six of my conference paper proposals have been accepted this spring, although I’ve had to bail from two of the four for lack of money.  The two I’m doing are about songs and mini-musicals in The Simpsons (in less than two weeks) and on the employment situation for popular music university courses (six weeks later).  I also still have possible conference papers coming up in July and October.

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computers vs. musicology

I wish there were suitable musicology jobs to which I could apply during my three-week break from studies in computer applications development. However, there aren’t any, so by early 2010 I will probably promote “Plan B” (computers) to “Plan A.”

If anyone has even a slightly good argument for why I should do any further work as a so-called “independent” (i.e. unemployed) scholar in musicology (which will probably never lead to anything ever again) instead of learning, say, XML and Java (which would nicely supplement my studies and make me even more employable), I’d love to hear it.