First conceived as her doctoral thesis, this updated and enlarged edition is based on the Holland Codes, three-letter codes designed to describe your work interests. The actual test is not included, but Eikleberry provides information (on pg. 13) about places online to take the test. In the end, you receive a three-letter code that describes, in order from most applicable to least, the three areas out of six that you have the most interest in. Holland’s theory is that there are six basic personality types: artistic, social, investigative, realistic, conventional, and enterprising. All of us are a mixture of these types, but we’ll be dominant in three of them.
Eickleberry takes into consideration that our interests aren't the only considerations we have when looking for a job. For example, many of us aren't happy unless we can work with people who have similar values or respect our abilities, even if it means working at a job that doesn't perfectly suit us. Most of us also need to take salary into account, since we have to live on what we take home.
The Career Guide offers a wide array of information on creative career choices that might completely support you; taking regular jobs as day jobs and working on your art in your own time; and how to manifest your own career. Eikleberry uses inspiring anecdotes from people who've created whole new careers for themselves to show us that we can do what we're interested in, even if there doesn't seem to be a place for it right now. (It is, I admit, a variation of the ‘do what you love and the money will follow’ advice. But that isn’t always bad advice.)
In looking at past editions, I note that there are three main changes to this new edition. First, the section on the world of work has been updated. Eikleberry says that "The good news is that there is proportionally more opportunity for creatives in the workforce today. . . There are more jobs today where employers are recognizing and rewarding creativity." Second, fifty new occupations were added, while only ten were eliminated from the Career Reference Section. Third, Eikleberry has created an website (www.creativecareers.com) and put the career tools that she uses with clients there. This gives readers access and allows them a chance to be expressive and use the Creative Career Notebook more independently for career decision making and job search.
This is a wonderful, focused, goal-directed book that can help nearly any creative person find a better job. There are no guarantees of finding your dream job, much less immediately, but it will help you make decisions that will get you closer to a rewarding and satisfying career.
~review by Lisa Mc Sherry
Auhor: by Carol Eikleberry, Ph.D.
Ten Speed Press, 2007
pp. 240, $14.95