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Been a while…

It’s been over a year since I posted on this blog last. Oops. If it helps you feel any better, 2015 was a decently uneventful year. 

I went to graduate school and made friends with whom I have already lost touch. My first semester in the management practice program at CSU involved evening class meetings at the small bar on campus and figuring out how to keep my writing short and sweet. My second semester involved a lot of coffee and too much work with little takeaway. Lucky for me, the program only lasted two semesters, and I was able to graduate with a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in less than five years.

Since I graduated in December, I fell back into the seemingly never-ending job search. Once again I have to be a real adult person, and every morning I wake up thinking “I don’t want to. Don’t make me.” Because I might leave my part-time job any day to explore other opportunities, I can’t even fill my time completely with work. Mostly, I just wake up earlier than I’d like every day and send out hopeful responses to job postings. I’ve had one interview this year. I thought it went better than it did, decided to be my blindly optimistic self, and was very disappointed when I got a generic copy-and-paste email on following up. Not everything can go my way, but I’m starting to get tired of being told that someone else is better than me over and over again. It really is exhausting.

On the plus side, all this free time is giving me a chance to write more. Hence, this blog post. Not long ago, I found an old story I wrote and plan to revisit it. There’s another one that I think might be publish-ready, and if I can overcome that “it’s not perfect though” feeling I might send it out to a few places. Maybe I can make some money off my writing and never look for jobs again. If only…

I’ve been thinking a lot about where I’m trying to go in life and how the heck I’m supposed to get there. In an ideal world I could write stories and organize people’s houses for a living. I could read novels and have a vegetable garden(if I could keep it alive) in my free time. And I could interact only with people I actually want to see. This dream might require more adulting than I’m imagining it to, but it sounds better than anything else right now. Being a supportive member of society brings my mood down.

My other and I are still together, now for over two years. Every holiday we celebrate, we now celebrate for the third time(speaking of which, here’s my birthday fondue celebration:10325516_1111123848899826_7263920850305055632_nHe lives an hour and a half away from me now because of work, but it doesn’t feel like a “long distance” relationship. We see each other every weekend and miss each other all week, but we’re never too far away. I’m usually crying pathetically whenever one of us drives away on Sunday nights either way. When my lease is up in August, I’m probably going to move closer to him, and hopefully a job.

For now, though, I’m just trudging along without a bunch of turns visible ahead. I hope that I like whatever comes next.

And Nothing Happens

I find updating my blog on a schedule incredibly difficult. I typically work just under 40 hours a week, and I often spend evenings with my boyfriend, but I’m not actually very busy. Part of this is due to the fact that I have been thoroughly enjoying solitude lately, and another part is because I’ve been neglecting several tasks I promised myself I would do once I graduated. The only reason I’m not busy catching up on the last 20 issues of the New Yorker, getting stories published, and running around the park that’s two blocks away from my house, is because I’m lazy.

Instead of being productive, doing what I’ve been waiting most of my life to do, is because I watch seasons of South Park and Dexter at a time. Neither of those television shows are on my “must watch list” either. I only started watching South Park because it was always on when I hung out with my boyfriend and his roommates, and I watched Dexter when I was in high school. The only real plus side of it is that I’m learning how to relax after years of constantly having to do something. I also regularly search Indeed.com and apply for jobs. I applied at becker&mayer! today, and if I get any sort of interview from them, I’ll be ecstatic.

Oh, and F+W finally got back to me. They didn’t hire me. The phone interview went really well, and they called me into the office for a real one. I felt like it went well, but a few of their questions were pretty tricky. Kirsten asked me when the amount of work becomes too much, and my answer was a little iffy. I must say, though, I looked awesome when I went in.

I think I’ve been feeling stressed all August because I’ve been waiting for F+W’s response. I’m more relaxed now, which is good, and after a little break in applying for jobs, I’ve been looking again. It makes me feel productive. So does writing for this blog.

For the past week or so, I’ve been having this weird dream that’s tensing me up, too. It usually changes location, varying from my old high school to places I’ve only seen in movies. In every one, though, I’m back in school, and I’m messing it up. It starts in the middle of a class day, and I just didn’t go to my first few classes for a while. I don’t even know if I’d met the professors. Then I scramble to get to other classes I’d been missing, and when I get there, I realize I’m completely unprepared for whatever the class is doing. A lot of times, it’s discussing books Socratic seminar style, and I haven’t read a single one of them.

My boyfriend and I celebrated our one-year anniversary this weekend. We drove out to Roosevelt National Park and backpacked to a spot a little ways from the river to camp. It was absolutely beautiful. Everything was so green where we stopped. The plan had been to spend Friday and Saturday night there, go hiking and fishing, but it didn’t work out that way. Saturday night was rainy, and my sleeping bag wasn’t quite warm enough–I could feel how cold the ground was under me. I slept a little better after using my boyfriend’s sweatshirt as a blanket. We couldn’t fish, either, because the river was too shallow and too fast. So after a nice morning hike, we packed up our things and hiked back to the car.

On our way back, we passed a very pleasant family, and their dog had picked up a log as tall as me in its mouth. I have never seen an animal as happy as I saw that dog. His tail was wagging, and he marched forward head high. I wish now that I had a picture of him.

 

I might post a photo of my boyfriend and I a little later. Don’t be too disappointed if I don’t get around to it.

Figuring It Out

I’ve been looking for a job lately, and it’s been a much harder process than I’d like it to be. I have a steady retail job, but I recently graduated. So I’m looking for an editing or publishing position in the book industry.  I’ve had to prioritize a lot in the last few months. I had to ask myself a lot of questions that I don’t necessarily have answers for.

  1. Where do you want to live?

Washington. Oregon. Colorado. Texas.
This isn’t a question I can answer so simply, though, because the most successful editors flourish in locations with worse traffic. I’m not sure how living in New York or Chicago would work for me. This also isn’t something I necessarily have to worry about until later in my career, though.
On the other hand, if I want a job sooner than later, I might have to look at places I’ve never considered living before. Some of them are fine, like Indiana and New Mexico. Others of them would take years for me to adjust to. The plus side of this is that I could do it for one year and begin applying for other jobs for which I would then be qualified.

  1. What sort of position are you really willing to take?

My first impulse was to apply in very limited locations to as many positions as possible. I looked at copy editing jobs for medical journals. Although this would be an interesting job, I cannot quite imagine myself loving it or feeling fulfilled by it.
Lately, I’ve been focusing my attention more on what I really want to do—book editing and publishing. Books and short stories, not scientific journals or newspapers, are my true interest. I don’t mind if they’re on a kindle or in hardback. Early in high school I went through a phase of manga and vampire books, but then my mother exposed me to Anaïs Nin’s diaries. In them, I discovered what literature should be. From then on, writing and editing have been my passion, and my goal in whatever genre is to help quality books be born.
I suppose, then, that the answer for me is that I am not going to sporadically apply to any job posting including the words “editor” or “proofreader.”

  1. How qualified am I?

I’ve had some difficulty answering this question. While I did get a degree in English in three years while doing internships, I’m not always confident that I can fulfill the duties of every job I apply for.
For instance, I apply eagerly for many jobs that require knowledge of AP style, but my thought process is flawed. I don’t know anything about AP style, really. I just figure I’ll figure it out on the way. This is not a way to make a good impression if you actually do end up with the job: “Thank you for hiring me! I’m going to be terrible at this for at least two months!”
To fix this particular problem, I’ve decided to buy all the essential style guides and learn them. Then—guess what—I’ll actually be qualified. I’ve begun to take the same steps in regard to web design and Adobe InDesign.

I’m also slightly confused by my own years of experience. While I had a year-long internship and a semester-long internship, neither was full time. I apply to anything requiring up to three years of experience, but I don’t always feel honest for claiming a year and a half even if it was.
It’s particularly funny that this is worrying me, however, because it is probably an easy question to look up on Google. I’ll save that activity for another day.

  1. How much will my future job impact my relationship?

This feels off topic because it’s a personal issue, but I honestly have no idea what could happen with this. He graduates in a year, so if I get a job it might be long distance for a while. I also worry that he wouldn’t be able to get a job where I decide to live, or vice versa.  For now, I’ve been avoiding thinking about it. Number four just feels like such an imminent life complication.

  1. Should I stop all my bad habits?

Yes. Yes, I should. I know. Geez. Get off my back.
I mean should I stop all my habits because I’m looking for a job or is that a bad reason to grow up?
I don’t drink very much. It wouldn’t hurt to cut back, but even if I continue to drink as much as I do, I don’t drink enough to damage my health. One or two beers a night isn’t the worst thing I could be doing. I’ll just have to work out a little more pretty soon.
I smoke tobacco. Dokkha and hookah. I only do it at home, though, so, again, I’m failing to see why I should stop. It wouldn’t affect my job performance.
I have more bad habits, but so far they’ve only been justified like these two. From this I have to ask whether I’m just avoiding quitting them or am being irrational in calling these bad habits.