This blog is welcome to anyone and everyone, regardless of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, or political affiliation. Unless you don't like writing short stories or smelling bear. Or if you voted for the other guy. Also, I don't really like it when you leave up the toilet seat, so could you stop doing that? Muchas, muchas gracias.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


I applied for a job on craigslist because I really loved the way the ad was written. I thought I could do this job, and just from the sound of the ad, I figured I would enjoy working at this place - it sounded like a fun office, full of neat people. I received the following response - it's very sweet, I know, but it's also kind of a bummer - there really aren't many jobs out there for us literary-types. . .

Dear Ingrid,

Thank you so much for your response to my ad.

Out of hundreds of responses you are only one of about eight people who wrote a truly original cover letter. Of course, given your background, you write so beautifully!!

I am currently in the decision-making phase after having interviewed those eight individuals. I must say that I am so tempted to call you in for an interview but I’ve decided against it because I don’t think you would be happy in this position. You have too much talent and great experience in the literary field to take a strictly admin job in a non-literary industry. You would not have the opportunity to use your writing talent here (I only asked for the originally created cover letter to help me determine who could think for themselves, communicate well, and follow directions).

I have no doubt that you will find a great job very soon. I wish you all the best in that process!!


Blogger ginab said...

You're correct: there aren't many jobs out there for us literary types.

Was thoughtful of the person to write a thorough, personal note back to you. If you're not looking specifically to reveal yourself for being a lit-gazer, focus on promoting all of the other skills you have acquired (tech and people and all that stuff). You're profoundly organized, but don't use "profoundly". Normal hiring janes and joes just want things to happen (sell, flow) not of the extreme.

you'll do fine.

10:18 AM

Blogger Melliferous Pants said...

Bummer that you weren't called in but that's pretty awesome to receive a personal and thoughtful response.

2:46 PM

Blogger josh williams said...

You know ing, I love reading what you write but I would probably be forced to write you an over qualified letter.
I have been using Craigs list to hire contractors, it is free and more effective than the local papers...However I have responded to over qualified applicants. If they take the time to write me something that is thoughtful and personal and not asking questions about the position which are already answered in the ad I will respond and offer alternatives.
Do not be discouraged, that was a one of the best responses to a application that I have read to date and could almost be used on your resume...Hope all is well, I have been working to much, however in my free time I am working. So at least I have found a balance. Cheers to you and keep your chin up JW

10:19 PM

Blogger sage said...

Bummer is right. That's a wonderful letter and its nice of the one hiring to write it, but nice words don't put beans in the pot. Hang in there.

8:14 AM

Blogger matty said...

I've always found it so annoying when someone tells me that they know my abilities and desires better than me.

It was cool, tho, that this person took the time to personally respond to you -- and to be honest (even if it was honesty from an obscured perspective)

You will find a job without problem. Believe in yourself === and push forward!

11:33 AM

Blogger ing said...


Well, there are jobs, but they have little or nothing to do with our strengths. They're simply a measure of the things we can learn and do well enough.

Unfortunately, the lit-gazer part is indicated by the jobs I've listed on my resume. I need to ramp up my cover letter and list fewer of the jobs I have done.


I alphabetized my books today. They look gorgeous.



Yes, responses are nice, sure.



I'm sure you're a great boss. If you're working too hard, save it up, and don't go too fast - especially if you ever find yourself up a ladder or wielding a drill.

All is well, and my chin is squared because I am determined. Thank you, Josh!



Exactly. I had half a can of beans tonight for dinner, by the way. Running makes me so hungry!



I couldn't agree with you more, my dearest. You should come see me at work tomorrow (noon to six) if you get a chance! If you do, show up before three. I have a coworker I think you'd like.

9:01 PM

Blogger Crystal said...

that is a nice letter! much better than the ones i normally get that say something like, "we already told you that you are grossly underqualified for this position. stop contacting us."

on the other hand, it sucks when someone recognizes your talent and rejects you anyway. good luck!

11:36 AM


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