The Job Hunt.

I've been looking for a job as a copywriter in Bangalore. This idea, once the seeds were planted, bloomed forth, bright and beautiful. 

I'm enjoying publishing, but my stint with Aleph Book Company is coming to an end. I was planning to do my post-graduation after it, but due to numerous reasons, I think it makes sense to put it off for a year or two and keep working. But working where? Like I said, I have enjoyed publishing, but the past few months, I've been feeling like I wouldn't mind trying something else. Before choosing publishing and throwing myself into it heart and soul, I'd like to try something that isn't publishing. Better to test the waters now, at the age of twenty-two, than waking up at twenty-eight to find that I'm not happy. 

I've explained this to many people, but I usually just get a blank stare. 

The only other career alternative I can picture (apart from being a drunken novelist, but we've already established I can't write seriously when I'm drunk, and not when I'm sober either, so that's out) is one in advertising. I helped a friend out with a marketing proposal for the Jaipur Literature Festival yesterday and she was astounded by my ability to bullshit without making spelling mistakes - it was incredibly encouraging.

 I like the concept of writing about something in order to convince other people to buy it. It's sort of like packaging something completely mundane, and being all, "Here, you know this is crap, and I know this is crap, but it's so prettily worded, and it's so eye catching, and it does seem more convincing than other products on the market, here you go, take it, TAKE IT." This could also be connected with the fact that I occasionally enjoy telling elaborate lies for no reason at all. 

I'm quite sick of Delhi, and Bombay is too expensive, and I would rather stick a fork in my eye than live in Calcutta or Chennai again, so Bangalore seems like the best option. A new job, a new city, a new life.This is why I've been sending out my resume to head hunters.

I turned to my father's friend - the Old Turkey - for help. He's been working in direct marketing all his (long) life. The Old Turkey put me in touch with a friend of his who sent my resume out to many people. A few responded and she very kindly sent me their phone numbers and e-mail addresses. The first lady I spoke to, a head hunter, was encouraging but vague. She asked me for a writing resume, and I said I didn't have one. Then I remembered my blog.

"I have a blog," I said hesitantly. "But it's really not a professional one. It's this sort of personal blog where I basically just whine about my life."

After a short, incredibly awkward pause at the other end of the line, she told me to send the link anyway. 

"I just want to see a sample of the way you write," she said. 

So I e-mailed her the link to my blog. A split second after I pressed the send button, I felt a very heavy feeling in the pit of my stomach, the sort of feeling I used to get whenever I'd have to give a math exam, or when my old Bengali tuition teacher Manjudi would walk into the house. Very negative sort of feeling. Went to my blog. The most recent post was this one. It would be. 

I spent an incredibly long time after that with my head buried in my arms. 

But then I thought to myself, maybe this blog is a good platform to show off my skills. I mean, the trouble is it demonstrates, equally flamboyantly, my faults. But hey, I'm human. Humans have faults. And then I sat and mentally assessed my blog. The pros: 1) I am obviously a hard worker when I enjoy my work. I've already mentioned my secret notebook titled ""Trisha's Plan for Becoming Indispensable to Aleph Book Company So They Keep Her on Beyond March". And given I'm still working with them, it obviously worked. 2) No surprise to discover that I enjoy writing and I'm looking for a writing job so...you know. Self explanatory. 3) I have written a handful of poems on my blog and some of them rhyme. Yes! So therefore, I obviously pay attention to presentation, construction and detail. 4) Some of them do not rhyme. So therefore, despite my commitment to presentation, construction and detail, I am also flexible, not rigid, not narrow-minded, and enjoy experimentation. 5) I have a lot of completely random information at my fingertips. A huge amount of knowledge about tigers, sharks, rip tides, dysfunctional royalty, etc. This shows a mind willing to Absorb Information, which can only be beneficial. 

The cons: 1) I drink, smoke and curse a lot. (But not at work, apart from the cursing.) 2) I average about two hysterical break downs a month. 3) I enjoy holidays more than an ideal employee should. 4) I am averaging about two-life threatening accidents a year, although I should point out that I always survive to blog about them, 5) I tell extremely convincing lies (a bonus, though, in advertising), 6) I am excessively awkward, breaking and damaging items with the greatest of ease,  incapable of walking down a road without tripping over my own feet, 7) I have an irrational fear of birds. *8)

Oh dear. The negatives outweigh the positives. I'll stop now. 

But it's interesting to think, given that this blog is listed on my writing portfolio, that a potential headhunter could be reading this right now. They might be thinking, wow, this girl sounds vaguely interesting, and hard-working, and refreshingly different. Or they might be thinking, man. This one's a looney. Not good for the company image. 

But, as Old Turkey pointed out, would I really want to work for someone who thinks I'm a looney?

Yes, Old Turkey, I would. I just want a job that will challenge me, and allow me to be creative, and live in Bangalore and afford the craft beer at Toit's while paying my rent at the same time. 

To reiterate, a head hunter could be reading this post right now.

Right now.




*8) Subtlety is obviously not a strong point. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Read David's books: Confessions of an Advertising Man, Blood, Brains and Beer (re-released as An Autobiography), and Ogilvy on Advertising.

You coluld also read Jerry Della Femina's, 'From Those Wonderful Folks Who Gave You Pearl Harbor'.

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