I think people underestimate the power of stubbornness. Seriously. Since graduating getting my career going has been one tiny heavy step forward at a time. With lead chains around my ankles. And hot coals to walk across while wearing them. Plenty of people have branched off into easier careers. Not easier to do, but easier to break into. TV and film is HARD to get work in, at least until you have a network. I think it's seriously about deciding that you're not giving up. And then you don't.
To some people this will seem so obvious as to be ridiculous. But to some, to the people who are wondering why they're not getting jobs when everyone around them is, it's really something worth remembering. If you don't get this job send out another resume. If you can't get paid work get an internship. Work for free but on projects you enjoy that enhance your resume. Meet people in your field when you get the chance. Keep taking steps even if the ground seems to be crumbling.
Just recently things are getting a tiny bit, just a hair, easier in terms of finding work. The last couple jobs I've gotten have come to me through people who know me or have worked with me, rather than coming from one of the millions of resumes I sent out last year. Opportunities are tentatively poking their heads around corners and flirting at me a little. They may pan out or they may turn to smoke. But for a long while they didn't exist at all so I can't but view them fondly even if they turn out to be teases.
And none of this is because I'm the best or have amazing connections or any of that. It's because even when I had to take waitressing work, even when I was working 12 hour days for probably $3 an hour (don't even get me started on the legality, but I did it) just for the experience, I kept going. Pure stubbornness. I didn't want to give up. I didn't want to have to tell people I gave up. Even when I was working for the alumni donation drive at my old university and I would see film majors who were now doctors or lawyers or making tons of money somehow, if they weren't working in film a little voice in my head would say They gave up. It got too hard. Silly, because law school is not exactly giving up. But it's not exactly following the dream either.
So I'm putting one foot in front of the other. Not because I'm the best but because I refuse to give up. I'm getting better and more confident with each job. I work like hell whenever given the chance. I'd rather work 12 hours and feel good about it than sit at my desk for 8 with nothing to do - I've had those jobs too and they make me jumpy and nervous.
So if you're feeling down or want to give up remember it's not the people who are dumb or talentless that don't make it. It's the ones who give up. It's the stubborn ones that make it.