Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.
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October 23, 2006 |
Dear Mr. Keillor,
I'm a 4th year college student, I studied in Missoula last spring (great show by the way!) however, I'm back in Wisconsin and nowhere near graduating...I'm trying to make a decision as to what is most important- in the grand scheme of things, is it more important to go somewhere you love, majoring in something you love even if it means risking unemployment or an unsteady job after graduation and an uncertain future? Or staying somewhere you dislike, majoring in something you like but don't love, but knowing that you're financially secure afterwards?
You're looking for passion in your life and that's good. You know it when you locate it and evidently you've found something in academia that you love and that you hesitate to take up because it may lead to an uncertain future. I'd push you to head in that direction if you feel confident about it. (Unless you're aiming at a major in creative writing, which I don't recommend.) It is so good for you to go with your passion in school -- for people who love history to take that up and not go into accounting or elementary education just because the employment statistics are good. This may be one of the few times in your life when you'll get to do that. To be completely free and make free choices. (I'm assuming you're single and have no children, Mike.) Later on, your passion may be overshadowed by a passion for a place, such as Missoula, and in order to live there, you'll make compromises, or a passion for a woman who has her own passions, and you'll have to negotiate those. But if you see clearly an exciting path right now, I'd recommend you head in that direction. When I was in college, I wanted to write fiction. I knew that. Employment prospects were poor. But I knew what I wanted to do and I took some risks in that direction and am awfully glad I did.