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BuzzFeeders Tell Us All About Their Side Hustle

The hustle doesn't stop when these BuzzFeed employees leave the office. Their hustle never stops, just like Jonah Hill and Miles Teller in the film War Dogs. Now playing everywhere. Advertisement

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1. Tara Parian — Comedian/Video Producer

Courtesy of Tara Parian

Her Hustle:

I write and produce comedy videos! I used to work in TV production, and I have a lot of talented friends who still work in TV and can get access to quality equipment. A couple years ago, we decided we needed to be doing our own projects that didn't involve bigwigs at networks, so we started our own little production crew.

Why She Hustles:

I've been attracted to comedy since I can remember. The art of producing it can be tricky, but there's nothing more satisfying to me than sharing a laugh. Making funny things feels natural to me.

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow Bean Bin Productions on YouTube and Facebook

2. Tyler Haruta — Singer/Songwriter

Courtesy of Casey Lewis

His Hustle:

I write, perform, record, and produce music as Antynote. I've been making music for as long as I can remember, but I started taking it seriously about five years ago when I began collaborating with my mentor and producer. He believed in me and my music and helped me define a direction I could take it in, and I've been working on it ever since. I'm about to put out my second record, which I've spent the last three to four years on.

Why He Hustles:

Honestly, it feels clichéd saying it, but music is and has always been an outlet for me. I can't not make music. It's just something I've always done and will probably continue doing until I drop dead. Sure, I go through periods where I'm too busy with whatever else is going on in my life to touch an instrument, but eventually I'll find my way back to singing, playing, or writing something, and it will just feel right.

Follow His Hustle:

Follow Antynote on Bandcamp and Facebook

3. April Boddie — Comedian

Courtesy of THe Happy Hour Comedy Show

Her Hustle:

I'm a comedian, and my hustle is slinging jokes. Weird, but I actually hate public speaking! Inner April is like, um, why are you on stage? People can see us! However, the payoff is the greatest reward, taking an idea and formulating it into a joke that genuinely makes people laugh is the best high.

Why She Hustles:

I started as a kid — my grandfather was a pastor and a great leader, but the only thing missing was jokes from an 8-year-old girl with Jheri curls. Fortunately (or unfortunately), he would let me be his closing act. At some point after puberty, my nerves took over, but eventually I got back to the stage. Stay tuned for my web series and one-woman show coming out this fall!

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow April on YouTube and Instagram

4. Marjan Farsad — Musician/Poet/Animator

Courtesy of Marjan Farsad

Her Hustle:

I always write poems about love, life, loss, and memories, and sometimes I use them in songs and make music with them. I released my first album, Blue Flowers, two years ago and gave some performances. I'm also an animator, so I make animated music videos for my songs which is fun.

Why She Hustles:

When I put all my feelings and emotions into words and music and make something positive, hopeful, and beautiful out of things that hurt me, it makes it so much easier for me to move forward and feel better.

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow Marjan on YouTube and Spotify

5. Clark McCaskill — Music Journalist

Courtesy of BuzzFeed

His Hustle:

I've been a music journalist for over four years now and was just recently named the indie/alternative editor for Earmilk. Music is my passion, and I've loved sharing music with people since the day I got my first cassette player. Writing for a music publication has allowed me to interview and meet some artists I never would have imagined and discover incredibly talented musicians, as well as given me the opportunity to amplify artists that are now headlining music festivals.

Why He Hustles:

Life is short, and it's definitely too short not to do something you love each day. Whether your nine-to-five is great or not, it's crucial to have a passion project outside of work. It allows you to create, expand, and explore your interests and express yourself however you want. I'm so lucky to be able to find and share some incredible music with the world each day — like my new favorite artist, Ofelia K.

Follow His Hustle:

Follow Clark on Earmilk and Twitter

6. Rahul Kothari — Photographer

Courtesy of Rahul Kathari

His Hustle:

I'm a photographer! I'm constantly taking pictures of the scenes I come across in my daily life, but what I enjoy more than anything else is portrait work. I love being able to interact with people and capture their genuine expressions.

Why He Hustles:

When I was 3, my dad gave me two disposable cameras before a trip we took. I became obsessed with seeking out the most beautiful things I could find and capturing them on the limited film I had, and that's when my love of photography was sparked. Now, wherever I go, I'm always searching for the best of my surroundings to take photos, and the constant search for the good things in life has helped me keep my head up!

Follow His Hustle:

Follow Rahul on Instagram

7. Kristin Rossi — Illustrator

Courtesy of Kristin Rossi

Her Hustle:

My hustle is drawing and writing, so I've combined the two, and I'm making a half-written, half-illustrated book that appears on the internet chapter by chapter as I create it. It's called Story of Ess, and I'm figuring it out.

Why She Hustles:

I hustle because when I think about the times in my life when I've been happiest, those memories are all different, but the common thread is that I'm deep in some creative project. The amount of time in my day I spend thinking about my shortcomings is probably in an average range — which is to say, too much — but when I'm making something with my hands and my brain with no external distractions, even if it's not the greatest thing in the world, I feel happy and like I'm justifying my use of oxygen.

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow Kristin and the Story of Ess

8. Daniel Toy — Literary Magazine Editor

Courtesy of Daniel Toy

His Hustle:

Over a year ago, my good friend Bob came to me with an idea for a digital literary and arts magazine where people could create new pieces based on a line, an image, or the tone of an existing piece. We call it Breadcrumbs because each piece links back to the one inspired by it, creating a "trail." My job is to edit the work that goes up on our site, which includes standard copyediting as well as helping writers shape narratives. I also help manage submissions and assemble quarterly print chapbooks of the best work we've received.

Why He Hustles:

Writing and editing have always been passions of mine. Hustling on the side keeps me occupied and my brain sharp. It's also the most satisfying feeling in the world to have someone come up after a reading and explain how the magazine makes them feel more motivated and creative. In a year and a half, we've been able to unleash amazing new fiction, poetry, photography, podcasts, music, and videos to the world that another stuffier publication may not have recognized. It's been so inspiring, I'm working on launching a new publication soon called Syndicated that unites my two biggest obsessions: writing and television.

Follow His Hustle:

Follow Breadcrumbs on Facebook, Instagram, and iTunes

9. Greg Thompson Jr. — Coder

BuzzFeed

His Hustle:

I write code! After work, I do everything from experimenting with a new Python library to developing really small web applications the world doesn't need. I also do some freelance consulting. Lots of my friends need help getting their software projects started. If they need their API designed, a basic specification for their MVP, or code reviews, I'm their guy.

Why He Hustles:

In 2002, I wrote my first line of code with a very specific, pretty useless application in mind. After completing the project, I was hooked on the freedom and opportunity to create whatever I imagined. It's 2016, and I'm still hooked! Since my day-to-day doesn't allow such aspiration, my hustle allows me to scratch my creative itch.

Follow His Hustle:

Follow Greg Thompson Jr. on Twitter

10. Kaye Toal — Writer

Courtesy of Kaye Toal

Her Hustle:

I'm a writer. It's the thing I've always wanted to be ever since I was like 6 and understood that people wrote books.

Why She Hustles:

I do it not necessarily because I need the money or I want the recognition but because it's the thing I love most. I love words; I love the way language works and the kinds of art you can make with words alone. And I love storytelling. I think it's pretty human to love stories — all of history is a kind of story, after all. But I love telling new ones, and my own, in the hopes it will inspire other people who are figuring theirs out.

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow Kaye on Twitter and Facebook

11. Greg Addison — Videographer/Photographer

Courtesy of Greg Addison

His Hustle:

I'm a freelance videographer, editor, director, producer, and photographer. I've been doing this for six and a half years now. It all started when an old co-worker wanted a music video for his first single for his new album. Since then, I've been shooting, directing, and editing his music videos. I just made a documentary on his first performance at SXSW this year. I've also been working on video portraits, promo videos, short films, and comedy web series throughout the years.

Why He Hustles:

It's like a drug — I'm addicted to creativity. I love the art form. I just love being creative. Film/video/photography lets me have that freedom to showcase my crazy imagination. Also, with every project, I meet some of the most amazing creative people. It's the best feeling in the world. I can't wait to work on the next project no matter how big or small the production is. There's no monetary factor in this (even though I get paid); I just love doing this. Hopefully my passion/hustle for this art carries over to the next person and inspires them to find their hustle. Can't stop, won't stop.

Follow His Hustle:

Follow G Addison Visuals and Greg on Instagram and Twitter

12. Hannah Chamberlain — Craft Cocktail Aficionado

Her Hustle:

My hustle is everything about cocktails and cocktail culture in Los Angeles. I research historical recipes and great drinkers throughout history, create my own cocktail recipes, try the best drinks in LA, and catalog all of these experiences on my Instagram.

Why She Hustles:

So much judgment, time, and sweat goes into the pursuit of the best way to get drunk. I want everyone to drink better drinks- — that way, even if you wake up the next morning with your face resting against the cool bathroom tiles, you can maintain a hint of dignity. At least you stink of Vieux Carrés and not vodka Red Bulls.

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow Hannah as Spirited LA on Instagram

13. Dilip Rajan — Music Blogger

Courtesy of Dilip Rajan

His Hustle:

My friend and I recently started a new music blog called Heavy Rotation. Every week, we write about 8–10 new songs that have been recently released. There's no rule on genre, though it tends to be alt-rock, R&B, pop, and EDM — the only requirement is that we have these songs playing on repeat (hence the name Heavy Rotation). We also add the songs to a Spotify playlist to make it easier for people to listen.

Why He Hustles:

During college, my friend and I were both part of a semi-famous music group. We realized we missed regularly talking about music together, so maintaining this blog is a great outlet for us to do just that. It also forces me to constantly listen to new music and think about it critically, which helps with my other side hustle (singing and recording music).

Follow His Hustle:

Follow Dilip's blog Heavy Rotation and playlist

14. Tyler Sorensen — Radio Host

Courtesy of Tyler Sorensen

His Hustle:

I host a weekly internet radio show on KPISS.FM called Different Head, so every Saturday at noon ET, you can find me playing classic new wave music from a shipping container in Brooklyn. It's really fun. In the few months I've been doing it, I've made several online friends who have introduced me to great forgotten tracks.

Why He Hustles:

I was talking about this with a friend the other day. I really believe you need something outside of your day job — a side project, whatever — to add more meaning to your life. Idk, I guess having children could do that too, but right now it's this radio show.

Follow His Hustle:

Follow Different Head on Twitter and listen at KPISS.FM

15. Ayla Smith — Musician

Courtesy of Ayla Norris

Her Hustle:

I make music for the internet. I write it and then sing it and record it — for myself, and for my girlfriends. Anybody else who listens to it is a bonus friend.

Why She Hustles:

It makes me happy. I love playing around on a piano and putting my words to music. I don't have very good production skills, so I work with actual producers who make it sound better. I've seen a similar response to my first song as I do from readers on BuzzFeed posts I make — and that is so cool. So now I'm making more songs, about more important things than dating, that will hopefully help or inspire people.

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow Ayla on Soundcloud and Instagram

16. Mandy Caruso — Fashion Illustrator/Designer

Her Hustle:

I tutor fashion illustration to an amazing student; we have been meeting periodically for over a year now! It started after this young woman found my Tumblr and contacted me, enjoying the illustrations I would post there. She asked if I would consider giving her paid lessons in drawing and illustrating fashion figures and designs. I had never taught before, but I loved the idea, and watching her become better and more confident with her work in time has been so personally rewarding.

Why She Hustles:

Since it's just the one student for the time being, money isn't really the motivation here; it's more of a chance to impart some of my knowledge and experience in this area that I've always loved unto someone younger who shares the passion and has admirably pursued bettering her skills. I'm definitely interested in putting myself out there to other students who would like to learn fashion illustration and develop their own signature styles with it.

Follow Her Hustle:

Follow Mandy on Tumblr

Watch Jonah Hill and Miles Teller play the role of two young hustlers in War Dogs, now playing in theaters.

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