9 Highly Bingeable Shows (and a few films) that’ll ease the blow of self-isolation

Author: Grace Ashford

Image courtesy of Netflix

According to Urban dictionary, binge-watching occurs ‘when your life has no meaning, so you watch a f***load of Netflix in a depressingly short amount of time’. 

While your life (hopefully) consists of a little meaning, in today’s current self-isolating climate, now would be a better time than ever to really fine-tune your bingeing skills. 

I’ve put together a line-up of the 9 Most Marathon-Worthy, Ultra Watchable TV shows (and some found on Netflix, and a few movies thrown in for good measure – as deemed by none other than (very qualified) me, your friendly Hammer & Swine bartender*.

Our rating scale is as follows:

Averagely Bingeable:I’ve got a cramp because I haven’t moved from the couch for multiple hours.

Quite Adequately Bingeable:‘Are you still watching?’ popped up 3 times

Supremely Bingeable: How long has it been since I showered? I can’t even remember.

*We also conducted some very sound research via an Instagram poll.

The Good Place

Y’all may love Kristen Bell more than I do, but that doesn’t mean this show doesn’t have some highly bingeable qualities. With an intriguing plot, suspenseful cliffhangers, and Ted Danson of course, there’s not much more you could wish for in a show. Except for less of Kristen Bell. 

I never said this list wouldn’t be extremely subjective and heavily biased.

Bingeability Rating: Got a cramp because I haven’t moved from the couch for multiple hours.

Atypical

Y’all voted on this one, and I gotta say past me from 6 months ago stands by you. 

This show is a banger. 

It touches on a range of sensitive issues but with plenty of humour, taste and Bridgette Lundy-Paine. Another A+ for the amazing cliffhangers alone. Very bingeable.

Bingeability Rating: Are you still watching?’ Came up 3 times.

Please Like Me 

For those of you who don’t like Josh Thomas’ comedy, avert your eyes. Otherwise, sit back and enjoy this Australian-made drama (support your Aussie film & TV scene!).

This show made me cry in Year 10 and I still haven’t forgotten what a decent watch it is. 

Easily demolish-able in a few days. 

Plus, my partner’s cousin’s boyfriends’ Mum plays Rose. Not spon – promise. 

Bingeability Rating: How long has it been since you showered? 

Twilight series

If I didn’t include these films, I’d probably get hunted down and cut by all the diehard Twilightfans out there…so, you’re welcome. 

How fitting is it to have your ice-olation chock-full of icy stares from Rob Patterson, and frozen facial expressions from our beloved Kristen Stewart. 

Taking into account the fact that there are FIVE (5!) of these very intense teen-fantasy-supernatural-vampire-dramas, you’re locked in for at least a days’ worth of bingeing. 

Bingeability Rating: ’Are you still watching?’ Came up 3 times.

Feel Good

I discovered Feel Goodat 11:20am on Monday the 23rd March. By 6:50pm that same day, I had completed the entirety of the first and only season of this show. The only reason it took so long was because I was interchanging every episode with one episode of Shameless – to make it last longer.

Mae Martin gives an excellent portrayal of… herself in this cute lil’ quirky drama. What really fed me throughout the show was my distaste for Mae’s girlfriend, George. You know what they say. A little hate makes the heart grow stronger. 

Anyway, I really liked this show. 10/10 for Lisa Kudrow’s very Lisa Kudrow-esque character. 

Bingeability Rating: Are you still watching?’ Came up 3 times.

Shameless (US)

Nine glorious seasons of the Gallagher family’s poverty-stricken, substance-abusing, drama-causing shenanigans. It’s way too easy to get into this show, with loveable Fiona and all the Gallagher kids. Also, I’m not afraid to say it: in season one Kevin is really hot. If you agree please let me know so I can win an argument with my girlfriend.

Bingeability Rating: How long has it been since you showered? 

Kath & Kim

Two words : Cultural Classic. Kath & Kimis a national staple, comparable in value to a jar of Vegemite in an Australian cupboard. Who could get sick of Kath and Kel going for a morning power walk, or Sharon’s pash rash, or Kim’s incessant self-love? Whatever you like about Kath & Kim, you have to agree that it’s nice, its different. It’s unusual. 

Bingeability Rating: Are you still watching?’ Came up 3 times.

Sex Education

*Chefs kiss* ah. Some wholesome coming-of-age content and proper myth-busting fax, F-A-X. When you’re not admiring Gillian Anderson’s true mature beauty, you can learn yourself a thing or two about biology, love and relationships in preparation for the post-quarantine utopia we’ll experience once this all blows over. 

Additionally, it doesn’t hurt to revisit where the episode where our King Eric first established himself as the Daddy of Coronavirus, with his famous words ‘Wash your hands, you detty pig.’ 

Bingeability Rating: How long has it been since you showered? 

Glee

Well, well well. It appears ye old fiend of a childhood fling reappears from the dirt once more to remind you of its iconic elitism. 

Timeless, ingenious, reliable. 

You know what will hurt you, today? Coronavirus (and Mr Schu rapping Kanye songs). You know what will never hurt you? The nostalgia of Rachel, Finn, Quinn, Puck, Santana, Britney, Kurt, Blaine & co singing their way through your puberty fever dreams. 

Plus, how versatile is Glee? Need to release some energy? Mirror each dance number as they occur on screen. Want to develop your hairdressing skills? Grab that hairspray and make your high pony as slick as Santana’s. Forgotten how to properly wash your hands among this COVID-19 hygiene crisis? Take a leaf out of neurotic Emma Pillsbury’s OCD book.

Netflix, thankfully, has pulled through by ensuring all 6 seasons are fully ready for your viewing needs, so take advantage now. 

Bingeability Rating: How long has it been since you showered? 

HONOURABLE MENTION:TheHarry Potter series – duh

EveryPotterhead has spent their lifetime wishing they existed in a world full of spells, hexes and butterbeer instead of this bleak muggle world. Today, escaping the reality of a worldwide pandemic has never been so easy, thanks to one JK Rowling.

Though Harry Potteris such a staple, the series has unfortunately been removed off Australian Netflix, which sucks big time. 

But, if you can, crack out your DVD box set for possibly the hundredth time and dedicate the next 19 hours and 39 minutes to good old Harry and his friends. 

Google it, thats how long they all take to watch.

Bingeability Rating: How long has it been since you showered? 

Digital learning Isn’t Necessarily ‘Smarter’ – Here’s Why

Author: Vishwa Patel

Image by Santi Vendrí

Back when tigers used to smoke, everything was paper based. Now, we are in the middle of a whirlpool of tech-dependent-living where ‘virtual is the new real’- and why not? In an era where switching to paperless options is feasible, quick and convenient; there’s barely any competition between manual archiving vs cloud storage, emails vs letters, auto-correct vs dictionaries or google vs encyclopedias. Each year, we come up with more and more smart ways to get things done- ideas and innovation go hand in hand, seemingly governed by intelligence.

In recent years, the positioning of smart technology in the classroom has quietly shifted from a novelty to a necessity. The BYOD- (Bring Your Own Device) culture is rising swiftly in our schools, encouraging students to use their own devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops on campus, thereby exposing them to a more unique, interactive educational experience.

Yet, when I reflect on my own experience moving from a drastically different, paper-based education system to today’s incredible fast-paced digital environment, I honestly feel that my rudimentary skills have lessened. Where my school life previously consisted of teachers bellowing ‘no calculators allowed!’ and carrying an electronic device to school meant a three-day suspension, I now panic about forgetting a calculator on exam day- and my grammar police mind has long settled down, now craving the swift simplicity of autocorrect. Calculating simple equations and scrawling handwritten notes for two hours, non-stop, during my lectures are much harder tasks than they used to be. I believe this is a direct result of switching to a fundamentally ‘digital’ system of learning. 

A recent study, in fact, backs up my contention that paperless need not necessarily equate to ‘smart’. Conducted by Dr Anabela Malpique of Murdoch University and Associate Professor Deborah Pino-Pasternak of the University of Canberra, the study involved 154 Grade One students in Western Australia. The researchers found that poor handwriting is correlated to lower literacy and revision, ultimately affecting motivation, writing development and academic success- proving that pen to paper can serve purposes extending far beyond aesthetic means.

These findings are particularly surprising, given that experts already claim that the sense of the tactic feedback a child gains by composing text by hand can literally increase their literacy and spelling skills.  Backing this up, University of Washington Professor of Educational Psychology Dr Virginia Berninger says that “handwriting, forming letters- engages the mind, and that can help the children pay attention to written language.” 

Indeed, equating good handwriting to intelligence seems a little silly – how many of us have that genius friend who is a reincarnation of Einstein, but who produces completely illegible handwriting, for instance?  (fun fact: Agatha Christie had issues with writing and admitted being an ‘extraordinarily bad speller’her entire life!)  But the researchers do not claim that good handwriting means students will academically have it all.  Their findings simply highlight that for still-developing children, cursive writing can provide spelling and composing advantages far beyond the benefits of typing. 

Digitally recording what we learn can be a necessary evil, especially for a busy uni student like myself. But how far can we actually go without physically writing once in a while? If I picture myself in 2015, I see a fifteen-year-old venting about my English teacher making her write the word ‘smaragdine’ twenty times before a spelling bee. Fast forward five years and I now rejoice that thanks to my laptop and smart phone, nobody will see me spell the word ‘piece’ incorrectly while note taking. New technology has made learning faster, easier and more accessible. But we must enable children to also engage in the more organic, ‘traditional’ method of learning illuminated by a simple spell of handwriting – with this balance, we heighten their level of insight and opportunity for success. 

Social distancing a ‘dignified act’, but we must remember to stay connected

Author: Millicent Spencer

Image by S O C I A L . C U T

Keep your physical distance but stay emotionally connected to other people while COVID-19 rules, a Victorian GP has urged. 

Dr Vyom Sharma, who has been active in educating people about social distancing via Twitter and on 3RRR, said it is important for people to act as a community, or there could be negative effects on our mental health. 

“We want people to realise they are doing something deeply dignified that will save lives. Do it with purpose and take some pride in it. Ironically, by practicing social distancing, you are connecting yourself to the mission of saving thousands of humans,” he said.

The Federal Government today reinforced the message that all Australians should continue to practice social distancing, which includes no hugging, and maintaining a 1.5m distance between people.

Dr Sharma stressed that it is important to focus on the positives during this ‘new normal’, because ultimately, social distancing involves “the denial of the most profound dimension of human existence – connection,” he said.

According to Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services website, “one in five Australians has a mental disorder”. For many, the severing of these traditional methods of social connection could act as a negative trigger.

Dr Sharma suggests reshaping our perception of social distancing within the context of COVID-19.

“Social distancing requires social and psychological connectedness. It’s important to realise why we are social distancing – we are trying to save well over 100,000 lives in this country. The risk to the individual if they do not practice social distancing is mild, but the threat to the community is enormous.”

So, where does this leave you if your mental health is suffering from the reality of social distancing, or if you are currently enduring a 14-day isolation period? 

There are several resources available to Australians. Dr Sharma suggested those suffering should “speak to a helpline, a GP, friends or family.” 

While we must forego social gatherings for now, it is crucial that we stay engaged “either internally through reading, writing, dancing, Netflix; or, socially through phone calls, Skype chats, online forums, or sitting in a lawn separated from friends with a fair distance – yes, even if you have coronavirus!” 

If all else fails, Dr Sharma suggests that we “find humour, irony, profoundness – it is there to be found even the most banal or dark moments.”

If this article has raised any concerns refer to the following support services:

Beyond Blue: 1300 22 4636

Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800

COVID-19 National Hotline: 1800 020 080

This article has been published in The Standard.

The Worldly Paradox

Author: Aisha Noorani

Image by Austin Schmid

Food, water, shelter, and clothing are crucial necessities for the survival of the human race. Yet community, freedom, love and peace are of equal importance for the sustenance of our overall wellbeing. An astounding one in five Australians experience mental illness annually, and almost half of the population will experience a mental illness in their lifetime. What exactly is it that individuals who have all their needs and wants satisfied, still lack? 

According to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita (2019), Luxembourg ranks number one at USD $113,196, closely followed by countries such as Switzerland, Norway and Ireland which all have GDP per capita above USD $77 000. Whereas, countries such as Costa Rica, Mexico, Colombia, Vanuatu and Vietnam all have GDP per capita at or below USD $12 000. 

However, according to the Happy Planet Index (HPI) which measures the sustainable wellbeing of a nation’s population by considering factors such as wellbeing, life expectancy, ecological footprint and inequality of outcomes, Costa Rica ranks number one with an HPI of 44.7, followed by Mexico, Colombia, Vanuatu and Vietnam each with an HPI of 40.7. Luxembourg, on the other hand, ranks second last with an HPI of 13.2, and Australia and the United States of America rank 105 and 108 respectively out of 140 countries with a HPI of 21.2 and 20.7 respectively. 

This data suggests that there is a negative correlation with GDP per capita and collective wellbeing. The higher the GDP per capita the lower the HPI rank, and the lower the GDP per capita, the higher the HPI rank. 

Now, it can be generalised that the citizens of developing nations have a greater sense of wellbeing when compared with the citizens of developed nations. Could this be a result of increased consumption in areas such as digital media, retail and other expenditure over customised creation and personalised development prominent in developed countries? 

Some of the factors that affect GDP per capita include personal consumption, investments, net exports, government expenditure, human capital and resource availability. Factors that affect the health and wellbeing of individuals and consequently of a community, on the other hand, include our physical and mental health, life satisfaction and contentment, societal involvement, cultural identity and autonomy, financial security and environmental quality. 

Factors affecting a nation’s GDP have a collective interest to maximise elements of monetary value, whereas factors affecting the HPI emphasise individual significance and the collective results experienced within a community. 

Perhaps, countries with superior GDP per capita lack the less tangible requirements needed to enhance wellbeing, or they are simply overlooked due to their lack of immediate economic benefit. 

It is clear that the pursuit to achieve and maintain economic and social supremacy transcends the echoes of concern for our individual wellbeing. 

Developed nations favour independence rather than vulnerability, while citizens in developing nations endeavour through life collectively, as they believe that the roots of society are strengthened through collective social effort. They easily comprehend the benefits of a capitalist approach, yet prefer communal ventures that benefit all, not just one. They emphasise aggregate achievement over individual progress. 

This allied approach originates from their ability to appreciate life, their existence and all of its beauty, despite financial, educational or medical impediments. 

These people have been compelled to remain optimistic and content with their attained possessions and provisions. Whereas, countries that have been equipped with every possible luxury, continue to retain a perturbed desire for more – despite the cost to their citizens’ happiness. 

Kill Bills: Vol. Recreation

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Everyone deserves a little leisure time, even uni students struggling to balance study, work, and everything in between.

But for many students, the terms ‘Bachelor’s Degree’ and ‘financially stable’ are often mutually exclusive.

Devoting time and money to recreation can seem impossible when you’ve got a list of bills set to bleed your bank account near-dry. For those relying on subscription services and apps like Netflix, Spotify, or UberEats to keep them relaxed during their down time, keeping track of these billing cycles can become all the more stressful. Then there’s the students trying to manage these responsibilities while saving for larger-scale recreational activities like holidays, flights and festivals. When you throw these varying elements into the mix, you’d be forgiven for losing track of your finances – or for not understanding how to use certain banking tools to help you better manage your monetary situation.

This is where Up comes in.

Up is a app-based digital bank that comes with a collection of nifty features designed to help you kill Your bills’ and streamline your money management. Designed so they’re super easy to use, Up is made to give you more time to relax – while enhancing your financial literacy, of course!

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After you’ve set up Up Savers for all your big recreation goals for the year, you can give them emojis and target amounts so you know what you’ll need to save for each holiday, music festival or big purchase you have planned. Then you can start the hard work of chipping away at them by splitting out a percentage of your pay, auto-transferring money or rounding up each time you buy that morning coffee. You’ll also earn interest across all your Up Savers*, which is sweet.

Up2

Figure 1: Set up multiple Up Savers to map out your 2020 goals

Keeping track of direct debits and your seemingly endless array of bills, apps and paid subscription services is an important element of healthy financial management. Yet it’s also something that everyone tends to forget about – until we receive that dreaded unprocessed payment email.

Up has automated the billing cycle process for you to predict your upcoming bills, charges and subscriptions. This feature helps you better understand what bills are coming up so you’ll better understand what you’ll have left money-wise for the weeks ahead, after those pesky payments are taken care of.

After learning about your regular charges, Up is able to predict when they will next occur. So rather than relying on an anxiety-inducing email from Optus informing you that your phone bill wasn’t paid because you didn’t have the funds in your associated account, Up will send you a notification about each bill ahead of time.

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Super insightful, right?

Alongside these notifications sits the ability to auto-track your previous bill payments – or indeed how much you’ve spent at any particular merchant over time.

If you want to analyse which service you’d be better off pausing so you can save enough coin for that holiday later on in the year, this feature will be your best friend. By simply clicking into the Up app and tapping on a biller’s logo or bill payment, the nitty gritty numbers are provided to you, in real-time. You’ll be able to see just how many Netflix-related transactions you’ve made over the past year, for instance, while also witnessing the exact dollar amount you’ve devoted to coffees at your favourite coffee shop.

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Figure 2: Up helps you track how much you spend at merchants over time

These insights aren’t designed to make you feel guilty about your Netflix subscription, or how much money you devote to your phone bill per month, by the way. They’re designed to help equip you with the tools necessary to understand how much of your bill-related money is going where. Knowledge is power, and with these specifics at your disposal, you’ll be better primed to make the financial choices that will propel your quality of life.

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Figure 3: Up Auto-Categorises your spending into a range of categories

Continuing Up’s empower-through-insight nature are the real-time monthly spend reports provided to users.

By categorising each transaction you make into an automatically assigned category this feature is like a nifty little budgeting toolthat does all the reporting and categorising itself, rather than placing the often-tedious onus on you. The important thing to note here is that Up can automatically provide you with comparisons against your average spend. This way, you can track where you’re at compared to where you were previously over the last three months, category-by-category. You can also set up tags for things that don’t fit the categories provided – or to curb habits you want to change over time. Whether you’re wanting to cut back on unnecessary spending in the “Good Life” or “Groceries” so you have extra spending money for your next uni break, or whether you want to see how a new recreational expense will fit into your life, Up has you covered.

Balancing bills, expenses and leisure more often than not seems like a stressful and/or boring chore. But when you use a service that takes the hassle out of the spend and save cycle like Up, you become much more empowered to reach a healthy balance between being responsible and engaging in downtime – whatever that looks like to you.

Who wouldn’t say up yeah to that?

If you’re keen to try Up, use the invite code “SWIN2020”to join and get $10 you can use instantly** through Apple Pay or Google Pay to try it out.

Disclaimer: Up has supplied much of the info required for this post. T&Cs @ up.com.au. *Up Saver rates subject to change. 5 txns req’d. Cap $50k. **Invite code offer conditions @ up.com.au/huam. Product issuer Bendigo & Adelaide Bank.

love myself enough

Author: Girish Gupta

Image by Annie Spratt

Maybe you came home to sleep and the flower-topped beds were too pretty to ruin, and those drinks were forced down your throat while you wished you were at dinner with me instead, and maybe those restaurants were just starters before the meal we’d have at our dining table side by side, but what about the coffee I give you in the morning, still at your bedside when I return? Or the breakfast you cook that consists of two breads with butter but no eggs on the side like I asked? I know these seem like petty things and I sound like I’m ranting but this is how your coffee rants and my toast screams when I pick them up and throw them in the bin. I should be washing our whiskey glasses from the other night, but instead I stand in the closet, catching clothes and packing them. Not ‘our’ clothes this time but just mine because I need a week at the beach or mountains or maybe just a cozy hut away from you, to understand how I deserve to be loved and to discover that while you’re out there giggling, I can build jokes of my own to laugh at.

Maybe I’ll stay with a friend for a week and I’ll ‘flix and chill with a pizza in my hand till I pass out watching Friends again or maybe Suits for one last time or maybe, I’ll watch GOT to remind myself of the things we do for love. During all this I’ll smile and never speak of you but that won’t mean I won’t wonder if you had your lunch or slept in peace but when and if I come back, I won’t be making flower-topped beds. I’ll love you like I’ve always done but I’ll also love myself, enough.

All I know is working for free, so how can I ever think of charging?

Author: Ana Tinc

Image by Arnel Hasanovic

It’s a Friday, it’s Valentine’s Day, and I couldn’t be more excited to get through my workload and eagerly commence tonight’s festivities. We’re talking wood-fired pizza, a nice bottle of red, and soaking up love and affection from my other half. But then I did a thing. A thing that killed the mood, pissed on my buzz, got a massive hosepipe and sprayed away all those anticipatory butterflies, leaving a gaping hole only anxiety could be so inclined to fill.

I looked at my bank account.

Surprisingly, the figures looked good. There were multiple digits! I had kept my spending to an absolute minimum for quite some time and could actually treat myself to that eyelash glue and new novel I had been fantasising about. In fact, I almost busted into the pharmacy, demanding the finest eyelash glue they had, because I was confident I should splurge.

But then I did the unmistakeable, the unbearable; my breath still quivers at the thought. For fun (because doing math is so fun, not), and just to be sure (I’ve learnt from past, painful situations), I decided to make sure I had enough to cover rent and bills. So, afterdoing what a standard human would consider a simple equation and what I would call three minutes of hell, I deducted my rent and bills from that glorious, healthy number swaddled in my bank account.

What was I left with, you ask? Twenty-seven dollars. Yup. Twenty-seven dollars and seventy-five cents, seeing as we’re counting every damn penny. That’s enough to curdle an appetite or constrict an oesophagus. The book I had in mind, The Ninth Sorceress by Bonnie Wynne, was $32.00, and god knows how much the glue would be (I’m a newbie to the whole making-an-effort thing).

Is this surprising? No. Does it make it less painful? Absolutely not. See, I’m a graduate, a budding, new, bumbling graduate.

Have you ever watched Finding Nemo? Well you know that scene where Marlin and Dory are riding smoothly with the turtles in a huge rift and then get shoved out, winding and bumping and spiralling until they hit still, open water? Yeah, that is where I am. Limbo after a big whoosh. And I’m paddling and moving my fins, but the truth is, in such a vast body of emptiness, it’s hard to know if you’re going fast, if you’re heading in the right direction, or if you’re even movingDon’t get me wrong, this doesn’t always feel daunting and I know exactly where I want to be, but it’s the getting there that feels a little impossible.

After six years of university, I learnt how to work for freereally well.Putting my hand up for volunteering, working in the hospitality industry for breadcrumb wages that just about covered my rent and a sack of goon. At the time, I thrived off working this way. I loved it. It gave me a purpose, it made me feel productive because I was working so hard, and there was this sense of selflessness that made me feel worthy and content, in a weird, weird way.

Fast forward to now. That mindset still feels like home, but with one difference: I have the capacity to earn a full-time wage. And now,I have adult bills and adult problems. The breadcrumbs that got me far enough before no longer cut it, I’m bordering leaching off my partner—and that is notthe place I want to be or what feel I deserve.

It’s not like I can’t make money. I definitely know I can. But after years of working for free and feeling like thatwas what I deserved, how do I make the switch? How do I wear a pretty little price tag that demands people to pay me respectfully? I know what you’re thinking: the solution is easy; get a fulltime job!

Ha! You think a girl like me would live such a stress-free life after thriving under the weight of pressure and complications? Nope. I am now a professional book editor and writer. In fact, mine and my partner’s life in Australia depends on it. Yes, my five-year plan includes securing a citizenship through being a skilled editor. Don’t get me wrong, I genuinely adore book editing. The catch is, no one really hires book editors anymore, not unless they’re freelance.

So now, I’ve thrust myself into a career that requires me to be upfront about how much I charge. In the past month and a half, I have made ninety dollars as a book editor and content creator. Not from a lack of jobs, no. I’ve actually been really busy. But from a lack of charging. Granted, one client was my dad, so fair game, I would never charge him. But, this is the harsh reality: I’m giving selflessly and barely staying afloat. I’m afraid to have confidence in my work, I’m afraid to approach publishers and wave my services in their face. Why? Well, my discomfort around the topic has yet allowed me to unpack this deeply, but I have a theory. I know that the worst that could happen is them rejecting me, which would leave me in the exact position I was in anyway, no harm done, so it’s not that.

I have two nagging suspicions for my inaction on finding paid work:

One: guilt. I feel an inkling of guilt. Am I really going to make is as an editor? Will I be able to stay financially afloat without stressing my partner out? Is it selfish of me to enter into a lower-paying career? My alternate degree was law, so we’re talking a steep decline in salary, ouch. But as the youth say, yolo.

Two: this is all very new to me. Remember the first time you did the bump ‘n’ grind with someone? The deed? Coitus? Well, if you’re anything like me, it was new territory. No amount of curiosity and excitement around finally giving it a crack could take away from the fact that I had no idea what I was doing. That’s what charging for my services feels like. A bit weird, a bit like, ‘woah, that wasn’t there before’, if you know what I mean. I don’t know where to start, I don’t know how much to charge, I don’t know who’s who.

Something I do know, is that I’m still working things out – and that’s okay. In a world where reason is celebrated and art tends to be undervalued, it’s currently tricky for me, a fresh new graduate scared to look at her bank account, to navigate the art of telling people they should (rightfully!) pay me for my work. But I will get there. With some reflection and guidance from those who’ve blazed the freelance trail before me, my worth as an editor and writer will become fully formed. And my ability to say ‘yes!’ to eyelash glue I don’t know the price of. Because why not?

One thing is for certain, though: there’s only one person who can truly change the way I charge. That person, of course, is me.