I started out as a Java programmer in 2004. I created a multitude of projects using the applet technology that was later shoved under the rug until it was abandoned. I’ve had some schooling, but never finished due to depression and indecisiveness, but never stopped coding. I decided to make the jump to web development because programming seems to have a steeper requirement to break into and is older.
I have sent out countless applications and contacted many agencies. The only response I get from agencies are "When you move to (big city) get a hold of us and we can find you something."
In my area, IT jobs are a rarity. The widely available jobs are labor/manufacturing. Because of this my work history looks shoddy (layoffs and complete lack of interest) and unrelated. And it pains me when I see an in house IT guy create shoddy software and give responses to user criticisms such as “Well, don’t hit enter” (a problem I could have and did answer in less time than he gave his remark). The problem is, however, that the available jobs around do not pay enough to fund schooling and save money.
I would like to get my foot in the door in tandem with schooling so that I don’t have to wait until I am about 40 to start. Any advice would be helpful and appreciated because each passing day and each passing hope becomes very frustrating.