Throughout 2015, I have taken no outside employment. My last real job hasn’t been since late 2013, when I was fired from Kabam. I spent much of 2014 chasing down other people’s fan bases and consulting on other people’s companies. I did a lot of teaching and freelancing, thinking all the while that I would someday I would have the free time to make my own creations. Last December, I turned in a pretty ugly card illustration that prompted the art director and I to have words with each other. That was the last time I worked for anyone. That might be the last time I ever work for anyone.
Opting to work for one’s self is a choice that very few people make and that’s probably the right one. To me, the choice to put my family’s future in my own barely capable hands was essential. I need to be the one making choices and knowing how things work in order to be satisfied. I love learning systems. Operating a small business is like playing a never ending game where the points are scored with real money. It’s like Dark Souls meets gambling and you can never turn it off. Good choices can be rewarded with tens of thousands of dollars while bad choices can be punished just as brutally.
Recently, I was told that my brother had recently received a raise of $10K a year, my first thought was “That’s great!” and the second thought was “That’s weird!”. Someone was simply giving him permission to earn that much more. If I wanted to make $10K more a year, I would have to come up with an idea that would either gain an extra $10K in income or prevent $10K in liabilities. There is a direct correlation between the value of my choices and the quality of my compensation. That makes me happy and I want to keep it that way.
While 2015 was a mixed tapestry of successes and failures, the net benefit of the whole ordeal has come out positive. The experiment will continue, the show will go on and I will rudely correct people they assume I work freelance.