Welcome to Day 14 of the totally unofficial EWF Book Club.
Boy am I glad it’s the end of June.
It’s the busiest month of the year in my radio station – tonnes of ads to write. It would be nice to hire an offsider to give a few of the briefs to work on – but it’s not feasible.
Hmm, speaking of ‘entry level writing jobs’…
Today we discuss Elizabeth Redman’s How to look for an entry-level job.
OK, I’ll admit it.
I’m a sucker for a ‘letter from my future self’ kind of essay.
What is it about them? (Genuinely stops and thinks – I’d never considered this before) I think it’s the emotional honesty, the fact that you can crap a lot of information in (compared to other formats) and the fact that it’s not tricky. There it is – on paper – “the stuff I wished I knew“. And whilst Charlotte used the same style in her essay on day 1, they both have their own individual style.
I love the fact Elizabeth’s mixed the factual (massive lists of writer-relevant job-hunting sites) and the personal (“I know you’re a bit shy. That’s okay!”) The amount of information she’s squeezed into her five pages – without becoming a shopping list – is pretty amazing. And it’s not just facts, it’s tips like..
“Write a list of everyone you’ve met who has a job in the media.. contact them and ask them if they know anyone who needs a junior… repeat this every month…”
She even give tips on what to do when you meet people at Writers Festivals. If only I’d read that before attending the EWF Book launch. If Elizabeth ever writes about that night in a followup, I do hope she disguises that bumbling ‘much more confident when behind a keyboard’ character. Or gives (ahem) ‘him’ an exciting backstory. Something involving overseas travel would be nice.
Elizabeth was kind enough to contribute her thoughts behind her essay:
Finishing uni and looking for full-time work was a pretty difficult time for me, and I think that shows through from the start of the piece, where I advise hopeful writers to take a deep breath and not be too surprised about blinking back tears at another rejection letter. A lot of things made it difficult: I didn’t have much income, my personal life was a bit messy, and the constant rejection from jobs I thought I was very qualified for made me start to question my own abilities.
So I’m not sure that I was particularly good at job-hunting, if job-hunting is something one can be good at. But someone suggested making a list of people to hassle for work, and I figured things about networking by trial and error, and I learned about the obscure publications where graduates are likely to find work by reading a lot of job ads, and I hope the things I learned might be useful to someone else.
Good luck! Let’s hope it’s an easier process for you all.,.
What did you get out of How to look for an entry-level job?
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Thanks for joining the totally unofficial EWF book group – see you tomorrow!