Look Ma, No Hands! Or The One Where Stephanie becomes a Copywriter

Dudes. Duuuuuudes. Guess what! Guess what! Ohmygosh you’re never gonna guess.

What? How did? I mean it’s not like I put it in the title. What? Fucking hell, I put it in the title, didn’t I? You people are supposed to keep me from doing shit like that. What am I paying you for?

Sigh. Well, since somebody (cough, cough) let the cat out of the bag, I may as well get to it. How about some background music first, shall we? Haven’t done that for a while.

Got music; let’s go. I am officially a copywriter now. It’s already on my resume as freelance work. But you know how some people fudge their resumes? I’ve never once lied on my resume, but I did use some creative word choices. Such as “freelance writing and copy-editing.” It’s not actually a lie: I’ve done a good bit of editing and writing for other people over the years, though it was largely unpaid work. Research papers, articles, book reviews, theses and dissertations, etc. That line on the resume did the trick, though. And it was a happy accident, really.

So. Local VIP who has contact with other company VIPs all over the country? The one who put in a good word for me in the Portland/Vancouver area? Yeah, that guy. I had to give him my resume so he could send it to his homegirl. Shortly after I emailed it to him, he stormed into my office and says, “Why didn’t you ever TELL anyone you’re a copywriter?” I’m surprised and say, well it was never in an official capacity, and I have told people. “Well you didn’t tell the RIGHT people. Didn’t you know we were looking for someone a while back? And that’s why (your dumbass supervisor) hired that giggling idiot in there!” Nope. I sure didn’t, VIP. You know damn well everything is a secret around here.

Long story short, the guy (just a year or so younger than I am) is being groomed for major leadership. Major. And he’s finally stepping up for real and actually getting involved. (I used to make fun of him. He’d come in the office to chat. “What’s going on in here!?” And I’d say, “Work. Ever heard of it?” Or I’d ask him if he learned a certain vocabulary word from a cracker jack box. I think that’s why he respects me, strangely enough. I’m one of the only people in the building who doesn’t lick his asshole for him.)

He asked me to give my opinion on some blog articles the new girl wrote, the one who was hired to be an in-house copywriter. I asked him how candid he wanted me to be, and he said “be the you I know and love to hate.” HA. So I ripped it to shreds. I didn’t rip her. This shit isn’t her fault. He said straight out that my super hired her because she’s cute and didn’t even bother to ask for writing samples. I feel bad for her, because no one is talking to her or trying to fix the situation. Anyway. So I do that, and he then asks me to comb our website for grammatical errors. I spent an entire day tearing it up, and then he had one of our web dev people fix it.

A week or two pass, and I hear nothing back from him – except that everyone is pleased with what I did. And my super calls me “our resident scholar” now. It’s…fucking lame. But it also feels good.

Yesterday, VIP emailed a document to me. He wanted my opinion. It was several pages long, fucking endless walls of text, so I just gave it a cursory reading and replied to him that I would suggest significant changes. We met for three hours yesterday afternoon to go over what those were, with the end result of him tasking me to rewrite the entire thing from top to bottom. He asked for design critique, too, but I could only give ideas – I don’t actually know design. (Oh. And to be fair, the meeting wouldn’t have been so long if we hadn’t been cracking so many jokes and laughing our asses off to the point that people came and griped at us to shut up. Put the two of us in a room together, and you have an HR nightmare. Alone, we behave. Together, we’re terrible.)

Anyway. I spent all day today rewriting the brochure copy and trying to adjust graphics and shit (that is once I got Archie to stop entertaining every fucking hen in the house – seriously, dating advice, recipe exchanges, cleaning tips – what the fuck, man). The fact that VIP is even allowing me to touch it is funny, really. He befriended me on FB just before asking me to do this…and he asked me anyway. My FB page is pretty much super tame – when I even bother to post anything. Park pictures, the occasional music video, cool art…shit like that. But I DO occasionally drop an f-bomb. And VIP, well, let’s just say his page is full of hunting videos, pictures of his children and bible verses.

Tomorrow, he and I are meeting with creative to look over the brochure, talk about design and layout changes and make sure the copy is cool. Once that’s done? We’re also gonna talk about completely overhauling the website. Those two will be responsible for design, the web dev department will handle coding, and I will do every single word of copy.

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I have a feeling I’ll be doing the pimping without a raise. I’ll do it for the resume line…for now.

It’s daunting, but exciting.

If I have to work in corporate hell, I would rather do something that interests me or that I’m more suited to. I have to say that brochure was a pain in the ass, and I loved every minute of it – even when I was grumbling under my breath at how shit the original copy was. I’ve been wanting to transition in to some sort of writing job for a long ass time now…but it’s hard to do when your degree isn’t in communications or journalism. So this is a HUGE boost for my resume.

I’m officially a copywriter, y’all! That copy is gonna be off the fuckin’ hook. That was a lame attempt at a joke. I’m sorry. No, really. I’m sorry.

P.S. I’m not sorry. To make it up to you, here’s a pretty picture. Clicky.

Cliffs

 

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Buncha Bullshit: The One Where Stephanie Rants About The Logistics of Making a Major Life Change (AKA:Whiny Girl Rants about First World Problems)

Moving across the country on a low budget is a royal pain in the ass. And the logistics of such are putting a mild damper on my excitement. It’s more epic frustration than woe is me bullshit.

I’m about as frustrated as a crackwhore without any crack or whorish shenanigans.
I’m about as frustrated as a woman in the throes of heightened sexual tension without a partner to take it out on.
I’m about as frustrated as a politician without a Lewinsky.
I’m about as frustrated as the CIA without a brothel.
I’m about as frustrated as. As. Uhm. As someone who is frustrated.

(I just reread this and realized most of the the frustration examples are sexual in nature. Don’t read into that, please. Or do. Either way, I’m gonna stop talking now. (Except I’m not. But it won’t be about sex anymore. Why would I talk about sex? This is a motherfucking clean blog, damnit. (Fuckin’ hell, I have sex on the brain. I’m human after all. Sexbrain is NOT HELPING, SO MOTHERFUCKING STOP IT, BRAIN. (I really should delete this ridiculous parenthetical that’s only making things worse. But I’m not going to. Because this is me. Hi. My name is Stephanie, and I have sexbrain. Hi Stephanie. Welcome, Stephanie. Keep coming back – it works if you work it!))))

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This Poor Little Fucker. That’s me. Seriously, that’s exactly what I look like. I had my portrait done. For seriouses.

It’s all a buncha bullshit. And there’s a whole lotta bullshit that has to be figured out and sorted.

Buncha Bullshit that has to be Figured Out and Sorted

Emotional Bullshit – Let’s get this bullshit outta the way first. My family sucks. Seriously, they can all go eat a giant bag of dicks. I don’t know where my mother is. She may or may not be in town. I’ve seen both her and my sort of grandfather at local grocery stores before. They both ignored me. Pretended I wasn’t even there. It’s no wonder grocery stores are currently my strongest triggers for acute anxiety. But the mother…is unreliable and an untreated bipolar. And she’s probably not even in the state anymore. Who knows. My siblings and my aunt (who was always my second-favorite family member – at least on that side of the family) won’t speak to me anymore, because I won’t “get over” the physical, emotional, psychological, sexual abuse and go to my so-called father’s side now as he lays dying.

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So yeah. Fuck them. I’m not even gonna tell them I’m leaving. For all they know, I’ve been dead for years. Fuck. Them. Fuck. Them. Fuck. Them. And for all the Fuck Thems I type, there are a hundred more tears. Motherfuckers. Fuck Them for making me feel this way. Fuck them for throwing me out with yesterday’s garbage. Fuck Them. I don’t even love them anymore. Do I? Fuckin’ hell, I’ve gotten scary good at compartmentalization. Don’t get me wrong. I know I can’t run away from the damage they’ve done to me over the course of my life. (This is not about running away. This is about moving on to a place I’ve always wanted to be but allowed people to tell me no.) And though I can’t get them outta my head, I can get outta this town of pain and tangible memories.

Whew. There. That’s dealt with. Let’s move on to financial bullshit.

Financial Bullshit – I know I haven’t spoken about my (failed) marriage, and I don’t intend to go into details now. At this point, it’s not something I wish to speak of here. I bring it up now just to make a single point: I was unemployed when we separated. But I was the one left saddled with the entire mortgage and anything else that goes into the typical running of a household. Since he took half of the savings account, it didn’t take long for me to go through every cent as I looked for a job in a shitty economy and shitty area for good employment opportunities. By the time I landed something decent, aside from little temp jobs, I had about 200 bucks to my name. And I seriously thought I was going to go default on the mortgage. I didn’t. In fact, I’ve never missed a single payment. But what that means for me now? I don’t have savings. I have some cash stashed in a box where all of my tutoring cash goes. But it’s “nothing to write home about,” as the saying goes. I’m fine. I pay all of my bills (except the student loan one which I simply can’t pay at this point). And they’re paid on time. I don’t do without food, water, shelter, books, etc. So I work full-time for an enormous corporation, and I’m broke. But only when it comes to anything outside of the basics.

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Let’s see what the news is today. Oh yes, still broke as fuck. Off to work I go, like a good little mindless citizen!

However, this does throw a big wrench into the logistics of moving across country. Do y’all know how much it would cost to hire a moving company to move one set of bedroom furniture, about twenty boxes of books, some dishes and a couple of chests? The lowest quote I’ve gotten thus far was about $3,500. Their competitors said $4,500. U-Haul would be about $1,700, but then there is mileage and fuel costs to consider on top of that. So. What it looks like I’ll have to do is drive myself up there with my cats and whatever I can fit in the car. Leave the rest in storage. And sleep on an air mattress in the tiniest, cheapest apartment I can find to start out in.

This also means that I can’t afford to let people at work know about this until the very last minute. Because I can’t afford to quit my job while I tidy up the house for the market and dig in deep on a job search in Seattle. It also means I can’t just move up there and find a job that way, because I’d have greater odds of landing something good if I were actually there. But I can’t do that.

Then there’s the question of where I’ll live in the interim.

Housing Bullshit – As the regular Peopleaneous know, I’m in the (lengthy) process of preparing my house to put on the market. This involves the ex, as his name is still on the deed. And the house is filled with a lot of his stuff. (Including the guns that I couldn’t get rid of, because they weren’t mine…and I did not want to deal with the explosion that would ensue if I’d gotten rid of them.) So. He’s been over a lot on weekends and evenings. Going through his stuff. Culling stuff. Fixing stuff (very very slowly) and occasionally sabotaging my efforts by doing shit like parking in the middle of the yard after days of heavy rain and rutting the fucker up. That will do wonders for the curb appeal. Fucking wonderful. Anyway. ANYFUCKINGWAY. This isn’t about him. And I said I didn’t wanna talk about him. And I don’t. So. The point is, this is lengthy.

And I have an issue that I don’t know how to resolve.

Issue the First: Selling the house is going to be difficult. First, the market it is in has done nothing but go down down down since I/we bought the place. Second, he never maintained things. And I wasn’t allowed to, in the sense that… No. No. I’m just gonna leave that there. I’m not going to make this about him. He used to be great, and then he lost his way. And then we both changed. I’m gonna leave it at that. Point is, the house wasn’t kept up. Things are broken. Things are damaged. Things have been neglected. Then the other day, the fucking city tore down a tree. Fucking ass sucking dickwhistles. And in the few years I’ve been there by myself, I was mostly so mired down in a bottomless pit of the darkest depression I’ve known. Too far down to even think it was worth getting out of bed to take care of the house. I was in total fuck you, fuck me, fuck the world, fuck the universe, fuck the house, fuck the job, fuck it all mode.

Issue the Second: What if the house sells before I land a job in Seattle? Does that mean I have to sign a 6-month contract on some apartment in town? That would make me lose a lot of money if I found a job just after moving. Plus, who the fuck wants to move twice?

Issue the Third: What if I land a job before the house sells? How do I finagle that? I can’t afford to rent property in Seattle while simultaneously paying a mortgage. Seriously, it’s not like I’m CEO material. I won’t be making that kinda money. So how does that work?

Which leads me to jobby bullshit.

Jobby Bullshit – Should I even be looking for jobs at this point? Is it premature? It’s premature, isn’t it? Wouldn’t it be foolish not to? Maybe someone out there thinks I’m worth waiting for. It’s possible, right? Or maybe I could land a job and let them know that when the house sells, I’ll need to fly back down for paperwork and shit. But that brings me back to the issue of rent plus mortgage. No can do, buckaroo. The good news is that I’ve secured three solid references. Two of you read this blog on occasion. Be good to me, fellas! Pretty please.

Oh, yes. More Jobby Bullshit. Another issue I’m having is that I’d like to pursue something that I may actually enjoy. Something with writing or editing would be fucking epic. I can even write without using “fuck” all the time. Promise. The problem is, my deagent-orange-wasting-time-250x127grees are not in English or Journalism or any of those other “required” degrees for writing jobs. The problem is none of my work experience is writing related, aside from some freelance gigs on the side. The problem is, I don’t have writing samples to submit. And I sure as fuck don’t want any potential employers finding this spot: a. because of all the fucking that goes on around here and 2. because then I’d never be able to rant or vent about work!

But I don’t want to do the kind of thing I’m doing right now. And I also don’t want to do the whole Executive Assistant/Administrative thing. I’ve done it. I’m damn fucking good at it. But it’s no fun. It’s draining. It’s meaningless to me. And it makes me feel the time, my life, tick tick ticking away.

 ~

So I don’t know what to do. More specifically, I don’t know how to approach all of this. I’m sure there are other issues that I had in mind before I began this post. But I’ve been interrupted countless times because work. And also because my mind is in a dirty, dirty place right now. So it’s hard to focus. Anyway, this fucker is nearly 2,000 words already. Probably about 1,900 more than it really needs to be! But my name is not Concisephanie for a reason!

I would like to ask something of my dear Peopleaneous.

If there are any of you out there who have done this before and have a clearer vision on the logistics of something like this, please hit me up. I’d love some advice.

If there are any of you out there who have made major career switches without the official qualifications to do so, I’d love some tips there as well.

And if any of you are in Seattle and hiring, pick me! MEMEMEMEMEME!

In the meantime, I’m going to keep trudging forward. This is my year. I’m taking charge of my life. And I’m still holding on to Rollins’ words.

Rollins

 GO!

(Please forgive any egregious errors. I don’t feel like re-reading this right now. Ha! Some copy-editor!)