The no job blues

So I did an MA, felt I wasted my money as despite enjoying the course I am left with excessive debt and still without people wanting to employ me. Friends getting jobs at MOTHER, Google, and other big names and despite my constant applications I do not seem to be taken seriously. It is infuriating and seems to be sending me into a downwards spiral that I cannot seem to escape.... I have no idea how to turn my life around atm.
would it help to know you're not alone? I did my degree in Comparative literature, loved my course, took two years out to be a fine artist while working in retail for pocket money. My immensely supportive boyfriend convinced me to chuck in both and become a graphic designer - while it means i still get to draw stuff and make a living from it, I'm having to learn everything from scratch by myself - the software, the general knowledge, the contacts - everything. I don't have a design degree behind me so i'm having to work really hard to catch up with design graduates. I've been 'unemployed' since June, doing a ton of freebee work for various people like Haymarket which is great for experience and giving me stuff to put into my portfolio, getting screwed over by agencies offering me run off work which I do for free which they'd have to pay someone else a few hundred quid for, and then they don't bother replying to emails asking for more work. I've been working my arse off for months and I have nothing in the bank to show for my effort except what I get from doing odd jobs here and there like leafletting in the cold and wet for hours on end. My friends all have jobs in banking and big companies like Deloitte, Merril Lynch, with porches and mulberry handbags. It IS depressing. But on the flipside, they may be rolling in money right now but they are equally miserable because they work ridiculous hours doing jobs they don't really like very much. The recession is a crap time for everyone right now - myself included - taking on shit jobs to scratch a living, but in the end, I know it will be worth it because I WILL end up somewhere doing something i love. I may never earn enough to buy a mulberry handbag but that's ok because I prefer canvas shoulder bags anyway. They hold more stuff and I'm less likely to get mugged :)
Once I graduated I had to work freelance for 3 years before I got into the industry... I was knocking on small business' doors (and asking people on music forums and the like) asking if they needed anything creating... I got a few jobs, which gradually became more and more as word spread and I built up a portfolio. I supplied my design work to a local printer who had a design studio, one day they asked if I'd like a job there as they were looking to take on a Graphic Designer as one of their guys was leaving.

Working for them was better than spending my time chasing up invoices and the like, and I learned a lot about the print industry... with that experience I was then able to join a bigger printers, then a technology distributor as a designer in their marketing dept, and now I'm at an Technology/Apple Reseller as a senior designer looking to hire and manage a graduate... this process has taken me 10 years.

Moral of the story is KEEP GRINDING! Keep at it and if you're good at what you do, enthusiastic, a people person, helpful and constantly striving to get better, you'll make it. It's hard work, but worth it... most of us have been where you are, but it does get better :)