Please Excuse The Self-Deprecation

I’m sorry to make another depressing blog post, but when you’re underemployed like I am (seriously, being underemployed is almost as bad as being completely unemployed) there isn’t much else to occupy your time with. So, I’d like to tell you about something that JUST struck me as I was taking a pee literally two minutes ago. (Yes, this is normal for me. Most of my ideas happen at night or at other random times).

All my life, I have been the person who is just BARELY good enough.

Starting in the 4th grade, I transferred into a somewhat elite private elementary school where most of the students were rich. Most of them had also been together since kindergarten. I was the odd one. I came from a solid middle-class family and I arrived later.

In high-school, I somehow found myself best friends with with who was to become the eventual valedictorian of our graduating class. She was Type A and gorgeous. I was type F (For Fuck This School), and incredibly awkward looking. (I remained so until I was about twenty-one years old, at which point I transformed until “somewhat cute/acceptable”).

Near the end of high-school, I applied to (and was rejected) from UT Austin. Through the CAP Program, I was able to attend UT Tyler (where I met my first ever boyfriend, who, I must say, also fell into this “barely acceptable” category), maintain a GPA of 3.6 (through absolutely no effort) and transfer to UT my sophomore year. Once again, I was just “barely good enough” for one of the most distinguished public schools in the nation. Still, I was there.

At UT, I spent a good three years dithering about, not making any lasting friendships and not spending my time wisely in extracurricular activities that might have helped me in my future career path. NEVERTHELESS, the spring after I graduated college, I somehow found myself once AGAIN being accepted into a prestigious program that I wasn’t deserving of, The New York Summer Publishing Institute.

What I guess I’m trying to say is that throughout my life, I’ve found myself being given things that I neither worked hard for nor truly deserved, and I think it’s finally come to bite me in the ass. The “Real World” isn’t school. You don’t automatically receive things for having a certain GPA or having a degree from a prestigious university (although Ivy League schools might be an exception). You have to show that you’ve worked hard, that you’ve done something worthwhile with your time, or that you know who to talk to to get in.

And what frightens me is that I haven’t.

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Sorry For Abandoning You….Also, NYC is Hard

Hey….? So, I’ve been neglecting this blog for the past couple of months. I need to get back into the habit of writing. (Not only maintaining this, but working on my novel as well). So, what’s been going on with me? In short, I moved out to Brooklyn, New York after completing the NYU Summer Publishing Institute. I got a job working as a Bookseller for Barnes & Noble (Yay!), and I have been researching and applying to tons and tons of internships and jobs (*le sigh*). I’ve been on quite few interviews, have read quite a few manuscripts and written enough reader’s reports that I feel that I’ve gained enough experience in writing them to mention it on my cover letters…..BUT HAVE STILL NOT LANDED ONE DAMN INTERNSHIP! F@#$ is all I have to say about that.

It’s been depressing, no doubt about it, and I’ve had some rough days. But I feel like I’m in the right place, and I feel like if I stick it out long enough, I’ll land SOMETHING. (Right? Right?) If not, I’m off to grad school next fall. (YAY MORE DEBT! F@#$%^&) I’m definitely happier then if I’d stayed in Texas, and I have more opportunities here, even if it means holding out for a while and praying to Bookjobs.com, The Great and Heavenly God of All Jobs Literary, that something works out.

😛

Apartment Searching Hell

Today, I would like to share with you the traumatic and time-consuming experience known as apartment searching in NYC.

It began several weeks ago when I decided to go visit an apartment in Washington Heights. This experience led me into a false sense of security, because it went so smoothly. The guy was very nice and so was the apartment. We had a nice chat, but the room was a bit above my price range, so I decided not to go for it. 

Experience numero dos was in Bushwick. The apartment was still being renovated when I arrived and the room I looked at was too small, so I didn’t go for it.

Experience numero tres is really where things started to go downhill. This time, rather than go through Craigslist, I received an email from my program adviser about an apartment that was available in Bay Riidge.  I set up an appointment and went out there. The area was lovely, the rent was great, and the apartment was beautiful. I met two of the three people that I would have been rooming with and they seemed nice. After my visit, I excitedly sent them an email letting them know that I was still interested. 

Didn’t hear back for several days, at which point I received an email stating they had already filled the room. AFTER they had told me to email them to set up an appointment with alll three roommates. So apparently they were just lying and didn’t like me.

Okay, bitches. Thanks a lot.

Experience numero quatro is what I am currently embroiled in now. Last night, I went to visit an apartment in Bedstuy, a newly renovated brownstone. I got there and the realtor wasn’t even there. I had to wait around for twenty minutes for her to get back from taking another girl to the bank. When she finally got back, I got to see the place. It was lovely, with exposed brick and new wooden floors, but I was then informed that I had to fill out a million forms and bring her either cash or a money order to the tune of 750 dollars AS SOON AS POSSIBLE LIKE RIGHT NOW EVEN THOUGH IT’S TEN O’CLOCK AT NIGHT. 

Anyway, so I emailed everything over to my parents, who have supposedly filled everything they needed to fill out and mailed it in. I went and filled out the renter form and gave them the money today. But that was all just for the application. I don’t even know if I got the apartment yet, and won’t know till Monday. Meanwhile, I have wasted a good part of two days running back and forth to Brooklyn. And I start my new job at Barnes and Noble tomorrow. And I’m freelancing, so there are some articles I really need to be working on right now as I’m typing this. And I still need to be applying for internships/jobs. And I have an interview on Tuesday.

Does anyone have some Xanax? 

Hello….

So, I’ve been absent for a while. Yeah, I’ve been kind of lazy, but I’ve also been super busy. A lot has happened, but I’m just going to sum it all up in bullet points.

  • My magazine group won Best Design.
  • My parents and I got into a massive argument about me moving to NYC permanently.
  • I began the book part of my program and decided that literary agency was what I wanted to do.
  • My parents and I made up, and (YAY!) they have agreed to support me financially for a while, which I’m definitely going to need help with while I intern and work part-time.
  • My book group won Best Strategy, which is basically best marketing/publicity.
  • The program ended and I’ve been applying to internships and part-time jobs at agencies like crazy, with some pretty hopeful leads.

Overall, I’m doing well. I’ve decided that (at least for now) NYC is my home. I’m much happier here then I ever was back in Texas, and surprisingly living in NYC hasn’t been as stressful for me as it has been for some other people in the program. I definitely don’t miss driving, and I get better at the subway system every week. With Sarah in Portland and all my job opportunities here, there is no real reason for me to return to Texas. Right now, I’m trying to figure out my housing situation. I’m out of the dorms August 9th, so I need to be looking at apartments now. I’m going to visit a place I’m feeling hopeful about on Sunday, but that room wouldn’t open up until September 1st. So more complications. Anyway, no one ever said living in NYC would be easy. Anyhow, that’s about it  I’ll try to make a longer, slightly more interesting post once my interning/working plans are a little more clear. Until then! 😀

NYC, Week 2 – Am I a New Yorker?

Week 2 of SPI has ended, which means I’m 1/3 of the way through and have only one more week of the magazine section of the program. I felt like week 2 wan’t nearly as fast-paced as week 1. Week 2 was mainly devoted to workshop sessions with professionals from the magazine business, who reviewed our ideas/proposals and offered suggestions on what we should change/keep/adjust. So far, our group has done very, very well, and we’ve had no major criticisms as of yet. This coming Thursday we will do our final presentation in front of all the other group as well as a bunch of professionals/judges from the magazine section, so I’m guessing I’ve got ’till Tuesday before I enter major Freak Out mode. But honestly, I felt like this week has dragged a bit. I’ve known since the end of week 1 that the magazine business is not where my future lies, so I’m kind of biding my time ’till we start the book section of the program on week 4. 

The highlight of this week was definitely on Wednesday, We had a huge networking/cocktail event with all of the members of NYU SPI Class of 2014, some industry professionals, and alumni from past SPI groups. I had a lovely conversation with Lisa Rodgers from JABerwocky Literary Agency, who gave me some great information on what it’s like to be a literary agent. I’m beginning to think that book agency might be where my future career interests lie, rather then in editorial (although I haven’t ruled it out completely yet). Editorial is very, very competitive and oversaturated, plus I honestly don’t know if I’m cut out to be a future editor. I love books and I enjoy editing them, but I’m more interested in content rather than grammar, which (coincidentally) is what agents focus on. Content, that is. Plus, to me sorting through the slush pile sounds entertaining rather than mind-numbing. Dealing one-on-one with authors and publishers is something I could probably learn to handle with some practice. And of course, the idealistic dream that I may one day find the next bestseller is a high point, too 🙂 I’m not the kind of person who likes being the center of attention, and agents aren’t often glorified or well-known.

We shall see, my darlings For now, I need to be working on all my group stuff I’ve put off all weekend…… :O 

Brackets

I am the brackets

Add me politely to the end

“…you too Hope?”

But the enthusiasm isn’t there

I’m right here, watching

Speak up, say something

But why?

No one listens anyway

Not to the brackets

They’re all watching the exclamation marks

The bright bold question marks

Even the finality of the periods

But what’s in the brackets, well, 

That can always be deleted

 

NYU SPI: One Week Down

Good god.

I’ve been in NYC for a little over a week now, and man have I learned a lot. Subway navigation, street navigation, how to haul groceries down the street while juggling your purse, cellphone and ID in the other. Not to mention the stuff I actually came here to learn about: publishing. Dang. The first week was a whirlwind of learning the basics, getting in our groups, and formulating ideas. My group is fashion/beauty, and we’ve decided to go with a magazine dedicated to showing off androgynous styles for people of all genders interested in dressing outside of gender norms. We’re calling our magazine “Bend,” and it’s going well so far (minus a few minor tiffs between conflicting personalities), but once again I’m having difficulty speaking up in group meeting. I have made friends with one girl in my group though and am getting along very well with my roommates, and, very slowly I think, coming out of my shell. I think I’ll do alright on Wednesday’s networking party as long as I can find someone to talk one-on-one with or hang with a small group. I’ve even sent my resume to a few places! 

I’ll try updating later this week.