contains this relevant definition
1) A person, especially a professional
, who surrenders individual independence
, etc., in return for money or other reward
2) A writer
whose services are for hire
3) A person who produces banal
I tend to think that I fall into categories 1 and 2, but hope that most of my corpus does not cross the line into 3. It is probably a false hope, but what can you do?
People are always excited when I tell them that I write for a living, and this is my term of choice for telling them that my particular branch of the literary art is pretty mundane and certainly bereft of glamor. At least I'm not flipping burgers.
It is interesting to note that 'hack" can also refer to a horse for hire or a taxi. I find some comfort in being at the very least viewed as a beast of burden: smelly, perhaps, but necessary in the grand scheme of things.