You know, it’s been a hard two years. Like any quality difficult time, it began with a break-up, was promptly followed by unemployment, and then in quite the cliche manner, it was capped off with an arrest. Now I was innocent, and the overzealous and violent police I encountered dropped the charges once they realized I was going to take it to trial, but still, I spent 12 hours in jail with a concussion and a crack dealer offered me his waffles.
That said, working as a freelance writer has never been harder. Mostly because the pay has diminished over the years and it’s increasingly more difficult to make a living from it. So I’ve been applying for jobs in search of something more financially stable, but I have had no success at all. As a result, I’m done with the formalities, I’m done with the “proper” way of going about this. I’m going to have fun because if I’m on the path to the inevitable outcome of homelessness, well, then I may as well enjoy the fiery descent to sadness and garbage can sandwiches. Nevertheless, here’s one of my recent cover letters, this one to Bleacher Report. I’ll post more throughout the next few months.
Forgive any perceived hubris, but given the faceless nature of pursuing work in this era I feel I must do what I can to stick out. Sure I could walk into your offices and expose myself, but that’s not the kind of sticking out I’m talking about. After all, you’re looking for a human, but because technology and efficiency have collided this approach feels about as human as a microchip inserting itself into a hard drive–actually, that would be oddly human, wouldn’t it?
My apologies for the weak analogy. It’s early morning for me as I was up late transcribing interviews. I’m a freelance writer who lives alone in a comfortable flat in the woods, meaning I’m more remote than any bearded miscreant in New York who’s applying for this job (and my cost of living is much lower, if you ignore college debt). In terms of sports, I fall asleep and wake up to ESPN. The upside is I absorb most sporting news through osmosis. The major downside is occasionally waking up to that remarkable dimwit Skip Bayless.
I’ve spent over a decade as a writer, switching between journalism and marketing writing throughout the years in order to expose myself to the worst parts of the thing I love. Now I know you don’t want to pay me very much simply because that’s how the industry has gone over the last few years, but I just want you to know I’m OK with that. I mean, I get to work from home, typing out Breaking News about the wonderful world of sports on a daily basis. Pants are completely optional as are showers and pointless small talk with co-workers. That’s not to say I wouldn’t engage YOU in pointless small talk. You seem nice enough, solely for the reason that you made it this far. Any other uptight HR staffer would’ve been, “Phooey to you, pal!” but not you. You’re a gem, and even if I get this position we’ll never meet. That’s unfortunate, but I’m here to work (from home) and turn out the best damn breaking news content for Bleacher Report.
Now you might think this approach I’m taking indicates I don’t give a hoot, a holler, or Darius Rucker about getting this job. That’s not true. I want something stable as freelancing lately feels like making fire with two rocks, neither of which being flint. However, I absolutely suck at writing formal cover letters, not because I don’t understand how to write them but because they hurt me deep in the soul. This is at least fun so if you don’t hire me I won’t feel as bad about wasting my time applying. But if you do hire me, I guarantee I’ll get things done on time and in style. And you, my lovely friend in HR, you will be paraded through the office on the shoulders of your peers as they celebrate your find: Me.
So let’s do this thing, and make sweet….sports journalism.
All the best,