I decided to take an unconventional approach to querying for a writing position: I’m submitting a tongue-in-cheek cover letter to a few local newspapers and keeping my fingers, toes and legs crossed (Hubby not too thrilled about the last one!). See below for a peek into the life of a DESPERATE woman who so badly wants to be PAID to write:
Subject: Writer to write and make you laugh
To whom it may concern (but specifically to someone who finds value in nonconformity):
Please allow me to introduce myself to you. I am a married, stay-at-home mom of three boys – and yes, the stigmas of that position, as well as the number and gender of the children, are mostly accurate as I do wear pajamas most days, spend the majority of time yelling, and my kids almost never hear my voice or say please and thank you to the woman who gave them life. My current job titles include, but are not limited to: chef, housekeeper, laundress, personal assistant to a handful (or fistful, depending on the day) of demanding and inflexible men, hostage negotiator, babysitter, party planner, life coach, nurse, child psychologist and bartender (though the latter two should never be confused with each other). I would add that I have perfected the art of butt wiping, but I feel that may be a little too risqué on a cover letter for this classy lady.
Let me warn you that this may be a bit wordy, but if I am succinct, I am not funny. If I am not funny, I should not assume that I have a snowball’s chance in . . . well, you get the idea. I am interested in sharing my plethora of specialties with your publication in the form of written entertainment. I am no longer able to entertain my current bosses with my biting wit and somewhat questionable sarcasm, as I am afraid they’ve all developed immunities to my charms.
I propose that I write a column documenting my somewhat hellish experiences with my little animals (one of which has special needs – always a fun addition of fuel to the fire). They have a knack for creating drama everywhere they go and I have a knack for overdramatizing their antics, so we, as a team, would be tumultuously entertaining! My dream is to give you and your readers a front row seat to the disorganized hilarity that ensues every day. A number of your readers are parents and, being one myself, I know stressed out parents would appreciate a tongue-in-cheek column about parenting and experiencing the area with young and rambunctious children in tow.
Of course, nothing in this world is free, especially concerning an aging woman under the influence of little boys (ahem, someone needs to pay for my hair dye and wrinkle cream). They suck every ounce of worth and youth out of me so I would expect some compensation for my hard work and certain misery while my boys embarrass themselves and me for your entertainment.
I would also like the freedom to come in to work late and take random days off. My current positions don’t allow any vacation days, so I hope I can count on you to assist me with that. Aside from the pajamas and yelling, I am pretty professional. I clean up well and impress when I have to.
I have a small amount of experience leftover from my high school newspaper, but that was ages ago (honesty will get you everywhere? Probably not, but at least I’m not embellishing my experience). My most recent writing experience comes from a writing competition I won in Michigan, hosted by my former library district. That’s write! I took FIRST PLACE. A few snippets of my work can be found below (please ignore the shameless plugging of my abilities – a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do, especially when the girl won the very first competition she entered, and when her brain cells are dying at rapid speed).
Wait. Before I end this asking only for a column, let me be frank. I’m not picky. I just want to write. And get paid. I’ll be your admin if you need one (and I’ll write about that). I’ll be the go-to gal for the boring function no other reporter wants to go to. Heck, I’ll be a grammar goon or spellchecker or what-have-you. Got a position in the mailroom? Need someone to read and respond to your e-mails? A research assistant? We all have to start somewhere and I’m willing to start by cleaning the office if it means there is room to progress into the world of writing. Be warned, though, that I will write about the condition of the office.
Please let me know via phone, e-mail, snail mail or hot air balloon if this situation is something that is of interest to you. You can also expect to receive a second copy of this in the mail. I like to cover my bases. I want a writing job so bad I can taste it. Strangely enough, it tastes a little like that Jell-O salad called Ambrosia.
Underwhelmed, underappreciated and under a pile of laundry in Sylvania