How to win your first playcheque

Earning your first income for doing something you love is an important landmark; it’s your first playcheque. It’s a wonderful moment to arrive at.

How do you get there? By launching a campaign and throwing everything you have at winning exactly the work you most want.

This is not the time to make wild compromises. Don’t assume that by spreading your net wider, you improve your chances. You don’t. By spreading your focus, you weaken the effect. Compare a laser to a floodlight. They are equally bright but the laser focuses all its power into a tiny point. This gives it the strength to cut through paper and even metal. When you focus a lot of energy in a single place, you’ll be surprised just what you can achieve.

I’ve dedicated a whole chapter of Screw Work, Let’s Play to how to do this but in the meantime, here’s one of the best stategies you can use to make it happen. If you simply turn up and do what you are brilliant at (and love doing), even if you do it for free at first, you will find it quickly leads to offers of paid work.

And when you win that first playcheque, celebrate it. Even if the amount you actually get paid seems insignificant, take the time to acknowledge what you’ve achieved. You’re on the way to getting paid to play.

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