I got my first rejection last week! It followed a disastrous interview, but at least I can now cross digital media salesperson off my list of potential career paths. This wasn’t much of a surprise considering I never technically learned what a spreadsheet is for [if you’re considering hiring me and are reading this I am very good at spreadsheets], plus I turned into a blithering idiot when faced with some of the surprisingly intense questions I got asked including “what’s the biggest mistake you’ve ever made?” I had to avoid saying, “applying for this job that I am clearly completely wrong for, can I please slither off to Pret a Manger and have a cry”, and instead made a hilarious joke about never making a mistake in my life. It went down about as well as you can imagine. I’m still working on becoming the next Carrie Bradshaw (terrible and irritating as she is, you can’t deny a cultural icon), but at the moment it’s not so much Sex and the City, more Celibacy in the Country (har har). I spent four hours today writing a single covering letter, and I’ve been gradually working my way through Gene Wilder movies.
(FYI if you’re ever feeling sad watch the bean scene from Blazing Saddles, I haven’t cried laughing for a long time and laughing after you’ve been serious or sad for a while is up there with the top ten best feelings ever—Brasseye is also terrific for this).
I’ve been fluctuating this week between congratulating myself on my job hunting efforts and having small scale existential crises on the reg. Harsh realities seem abundant, for example the slowly dawning realisation that being a middle class twenty something from Surrey with an English degree, a blog, a passion for brunch and aspirations of working for penguin/puffin/pelican is not very original. I’ve had some less than encouraging feedback from people who seem to see my aspirations as overambitious but somehow still sort of flimsy. In those conversations I can see them picturing a whole bunch of us just blogging away, eating mashed up avocados, waiting for someone to pay our train fares to London. I can’t help wondering if my being a woman plays into this, and I know that’s not an entirely irrational thought to have. Anyway, the publishing industry is often presented as a saturated, nigh-on impenetrable body that people just sort of magically end up in after juggling a masters, an internship, captaining the varsity lacrosse team and volunteering with baby animals at the weekends. I just want to read books and talk about books and maybe get free books! PLUS there’s the fact that the world is not-so-quietly going to shit and maybe I should be doing something about that instead.
There’s something really terrifying about opening yourself up to judgment after a long period of convalescence/unemployment/hiding. It’s all well and good to build yourself up and practice self-care, but it’s something different when you put yourself out in the open in a completely unfamiliar environment with people you’d never usually meet. If I’m honest, some old anxieties came to the surface this week, and the kinds of thinking I’d been trying to cultivate became fuzzy. I don’t really know what to suggest in this situation since I’m still recovering from my minor ordeal and feeling very lost in general. Going on a run is a good start, as is seeing an old friend or going on this for a bit: http://www.trumpdonald.org .