The thing about searching for writing jobs when you’re a professional writer/editor type is that sometimes you need to show that you can, you know, actually write, and so you ill-advisedly distribute links to your blog in cover letters. You think, hey! I blog! Blogging’s even part of the job description, and I can blog, and here is my blog as proof that I can blog! Ta-da!
And then a day or so later, reality sets in that this is your personal blog, and because you really, really want this job, you begin the agonizing process of analyzing every single entry as a reflection of you and your fitness for the job that you really, really want.
You realize you said “shit” in the most recent entry.
And “asshat” in the entry before that.
Jesus, lately you’ve been obsessed with cancer, and no one wants to hire someone who apparently may have cancer, even though you don’t actually have cancer that you know of but you’re just very, very afraid of having cancer, so you write a lot of blog posts about cancer, and you don’t really know why, either; it’s weird to you too.
And then it’s pretty much all over. The entries fly by in your mind like endless rows of filing cabinets, like in that one metaphorical story about heaven, even though, let’s be honest, you haven’t written that much. But you have cussed some, which, you don’t know, could be a sin just as damning according to this new company as it is in that heaven metaphor that was made up by Baptists probably.
You’ve displayed your ignorance at times. You’ve written about life as you experience it, which is embarrassing at times. You haven’t been especially professional, because this isn’t a professional blog! It’s a personal blog! What were you thinking, merging those two selves!
In a panic, you write a post about your panic, which makes everything very meta and what are you even talking about anymore? Infinity?
But this is the truth. You don’t have two selves. You have one self. If this company decides to hire your one self, this company knows what it’s getting. You’re neurotic at times. But the other side of that coin is that you immerse yourself in the work that you do, which is why you craved Pizza Hut for the three years straight that you worked at the ad agency (the word “melty” is ridiculous and yet so effective) and is why there have been so many goddamn entries about cancer lately. You don’t have cancer. You’re pretty sure you don’t. You wrote that last sentence because you can be superstitious. You’ve made mistakes and learned from them, and you’ve written about it. And sometimes you want to be someone else, someone who’s more professional and together and hireable and never makes mistakes and isn’t neurotic and has an incredible blog already so chock full of insight and wit and genius that when she includes the link to it on her cover letter, she doesn’t have to write a meta blog post about it in a panic.
Here’s the kicker. That girl has two selves. She just does. No one can be that girl all the time. And you’d rather just be your one you. Your one you who is either right for the job or isn’t but who at least doesn’t have to worry about keeping track of a whole other self or merging two selves at the end of the day, because isn’t one enough already?
You hope. You are enough. Already.