For those young uns thinking about a career in IT
don't bother - it really is a dead end street.
It boom, busts all the time which is awful for cashflow. Find something else and keep your interest in IT.
There is no pot of gold, there is no rainbow even :)
Oh, and if you think you are good it will burn you out faster than anything else, not really because of the work, but if you hit a dry spell you won't know what to do, you will have been so deep in the code, that when you stop it is like doing cold turkey.
Become a lawyer, musician, roadie, tailor, gardener, baker, fisherman, candlestick maker, lorry driver, but don't touch IT with a barge pole. IT is just all consuming there is no balance, you are either good at it and that is what you do 24/7, or you are just a passenger without a clue, the former will mean you will do the work of the latter, and the latter well they are just a bum on a seat feeling inadequate.
Mark my words, if you enjoy IT, and by that I mean you can; compile your own kernel, hack a driver module from scratch, know coding from assembly to 4GL with multiple languages in between, configure most of the major server applications, create dynamic websites, construct robust databases, know a few operating systems including CISCO, understand a few network protocols (TCP/IP suite), build your own systems and wield a soldering iron, if you know and can do all that then still DO NOT go into IT, find something else and keep IT as your hobby you can use to leverage another vocation.
Signed - Last of the Developers