Yo Waddup I’m Back: Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Just Start Posting Stuff Again, Dammit

I recently broke down and bought what my be…my first ever? fantasy novel. My dad bought me The Hobbit in middle school, but my dad was buying it as much for my dad as he was for me, so I’m not sure it counts. Also, The Hobbit is nice enough to also fall under the “classics” category. The fantasy novel I just bought does not.

It’s called The Purifying Fire. It’s A Planeswalker Novel. For those of you not familiar with the two-decade-old Magic: The Gathering trading card game…it’s one of the novels exploring the lore behind the two-decade-old Magic: The Gathering trading card game. Not high fantasy. Just candy-coated, mass-marketed, flash-bang drama. I bought it on my e-reader, because e-readers were created to hide embarrassing paperbacks.

It had lots of fighting and stuff-wrecking. It featured visits to three different planes of existence in a mere two hundred twenty-three pages. It had a female protagonist and a male supporting character and a lot of sexual tension. Exactly what I expected. Exactly what I was looking for.

Not exactly what I pride myself on reading most of the time. I was an English major, for God’s sake. I got my B.A. in Understanding Why Fiction Like This Is Popular, But Not, Like, Worth Reading.

But here’s the thing: this book was two hundred twenty-three pages long. And I tore through those two hundred twenty-three pages in four days.

The last time I tore through two hundred twenty-three pages in four days, I was being graded on it. And I wasn’t having nearly as much fun.

And what I picked up from this experience is that I should really get off my ass and get back to reading. And writing. And doing things.

I tend to get in my own way what it comes to doing things, because if I’m going to do them, I want to do them right. If I’m going to think, I want to think deeply. If I’m going to write, I want to write perfectly. I want to read Barth and Dostoyevsky for funsies. I want to have insightful things to say about the insightful things I seek out.

And, to be fair, I do. Some of the time. Like, an average of two months out of twelve, maybe, tops.

But for the other ten months, I don’t feel like Barth or Dostoyevsky are very funsies. And I don’t have anything interesting to say about them. And I mope and worry about the fact that I should…instead of doing anything else.

I stopped thinking about what I should be doing and decided to do something stupid and fun and read the “”wrong”” sort of book and wound up reading two hundred twenty-three pages in four days. Which is something. Not much, but much more than the nothing I was accomplishing while waiting around for depth and motivation to smack me in the face.

I don’t often have deep thoughts about deep things. But I have some solidly average thoughts about average things. I can read a Planeswalker novel and figure out this Doing Stuff habit is a good habit to feed into. Starting with my thoughts on Planeswalker novels. Because everything’s gotta start somewhere.

My Honest Cover Letter

To Whom It May Concern:

My name is Annica Gage and I am writing to apply for the Copywriter position with your company. Based on the responsibilities of this position, I think I would be a reasonable fit. Not one hundred percent everything you’re looking for, but willing and able to do the vast majority of what you want and convincingly bullshit my way through the rest.

I recently graduated with my B.A. in English and minor in Religion from George Fox University, where I learned a multitude of skills I can bring to this position, plus maybe sixty percent of the things you are formally asking for. Which is not to say I cannot pick up the things you are asking for. So well, in fact, that you may mistake me for an expert a skill I developed a mere night before. Learning on the job is a talent every employee should have, and joining your company would allow me to take this ability to the next level, plus prove an incredible boon to you. While you may think you are looking for someone who knows what’s going on all the time, I can offer you something more important: someone who appears to know what’s going on all the time. Clients respond well to this, and I am happy to prove my skillset to you.

The primary hole in my qualifications for this position is formal work experience: I have not yet completed the preferred four to six years in marketing or advertising, as I just finished my degree and spent my time in undergrad telling myself that the real world will wait while enrolling in electives like Quaker Studies and Badminton. But please, do not assume that a few gaps in my formal training in any way make me an unqualified worker. I have a number of skills gained from other jobs and internships that I plan to bring to the table.

I am a quick learner who spent many days in undergrad becoming a semi-expert in a variety of topics literally overnight. I am part of a network of professionals in a variety of fields who will let me bug them for whatever information I need (and who I actually want to talk to now that I do not have to share dorm hall showers with them). And I have extensive experience collaborating with clients, co-workers, and supervisors alike, and can respond to requests, both clear and passive-aggressive, with a perfect mix of professional attention and personal apathy objectivity.

Also, I know we’re not supposed to talk about this, but can I just tell you? You can pay me less. This is my first real foray into the workforce, which means I still think twelve dollars an hour and the most basic insurance is an amazing deal. Just something to think about.

I can be reached by phone any time, except the very irregular hours I am at my current retail job, at (212) 664-7665. Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns. (Although I would appreciate it if you did not actually call with concerns. I agonized about even including the offer in this letter, as I am a little concerned a potential employer calling me at home to discuss reservations about my skill set may cause me to literally melt into the floor.)

Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you soon.


Annica Gage