If it were difficult to penetrate the international literary scene a decade ago, today many young Filipino writers are getting published in international magazines all because of the Internet. Furthermore, with the advent of Guru, Elance, and other job markets, Filipino writers are able get projects and commissioned work abroad. That means a wider market and more jobs (and more money!) for writers.
Many years ago when I applied for admission at the University of the Philippines, I was weighing the pros and cons of taking creative writing as against journalism. My parents’ advice echoed in my mind: You can never get rich by writing.
Of course, these days, making money through writing is not altogether impossible and one can actually live comfortably by doing copywriting, manuscript editing, and Web content work. While this isn’t the type of creative work that most writers aspire for, it brings food to the table, and whoever said you couldn’t write a novel or a short story on your days off, eh?
A project fell onto my lap a few weeks ago, courtesy of a forgotten profile on Writers.net. Perhaps things like this don’t happen frequently, but it bolsters what I have always believed in: for you to break borders and find jobs elsewhere, you must have an online presence.