A few weeks ago, I was in a really dark place emotionally. I was having a hard time at work, feeling very complacent and as though I was perpetually stuck, never to move forward. I even tried to book a flight to Oakland to see my friend, Caroline, for the weekend, because she is a human ray of sunshine and can make any bad day better. I decided against that plan only because flights to Oakland leaving immediately would have cost around $2,000, and even in my emotionally distraught state, I couldn’t rationalize that. Instead, I went to Target and spent money on things I didn’t need, but it made me feel better at the time. The real low of the day was when I purchased the Carly Rae Jepsen CD. At that point, I knew I was nearing rock bottom. I took the CD home, along with the cupcakes and copious amounts of chocolate I had also purchased. I ate the cupcakes and marathoned sad romantic comedies, but I couldn’t bring myself to listen to the CD. I knew the only thing to do would be to return it, so I did. I drove back to Target and returned that awful CD. I don’t know what I was thinking when I bought it, but people really shouldn’t be allowed to shop when depressed.
For those of you unaware, I am in pursuit of a career in publishing, though I currently work as an assistant. I have been actively looking by means of sending out résumés, applications, references, and letters of recommendation for a few months now with little to no result. I expected this, so I’m trying not to lose hope. When you submit an application to a large publishing house, you receive an email saying not to expect further response unless you’re on the short list for consideration. Considering how many people must apply for each position, I understand being unable to reach out to every applicant, though it is still a bit disheartening. I feel like I’m good enough, but how do I make them see that. How do I make them notice me above other applicants? How do I make my application stand out and demand attention?
I’ve probably applied to somewhere between twenty and thirty positions since I’ve started my search, without any real result. I’m looking to make a real move, a real change in my life. The jobs I’m applying to have all been in New York, with the exception of one in Boston and one in New Orleans. A week or so ago, I received an email from the Editor in Chief of the publishing house in New Orleans of which I recently applied. She was thanking me for my application and letting me know the position for which I was applying was unavailable. Though it was a rejection of sorts, it was a response, and I was happy to receive it. She was brief but kind and I responded thanking her for taking the time to let me know. That’s really all I want, even if they are rejections, to know.
But this is a waiting game, so that’s what I’m going to do. I’ll keep send out résumés and applications and keep hoping to stand out. Things have never been particularly easy for me, and I wouldn’t expect them to start now. Where would be the fun in that?