It is with great sorrow that I reminisce on the failure of my many job applications and corresponding cover letters. Among those unsuccessful — applications for teaching jobs, non-profit jobs, copywriter jobs, editor jobs, retail jobs.
These documents can be found lying untouched in a Word document folder on my hard drive. They have gone unnoticed for many months by potential employers and HR hiring committees, but I have not forgotten about them. I have not forgotten how organized and aesthetically pleasing they were, or how I labored over them for days, making sure the words that decorated those documents were clear and focused and representative of my skills and experiences. I have not forgotten the pleasure and surge of expectation that I felt when I clicked the “send” button and emailed them to companies that ultimately thought them too plain, or too incapable, or too weak.
A part of myself went into those .pdf and .docx files. Indeed, they were me, at least to recruiters who read them. In an increasingly digitally-based and digitally-centric world, and an America where it feels impossible to me to find a full-time job, those computer files were the only link between me and a potential boss. They had to be, because for many jobs, applicants are no longer requested to bother an overworked staff by dropping off applications in person.
As I scroll over the “Job Applications” folder on my laptop, I see little parts of my soul, little parts of my heart that have imbued the little document icons on the screen, and I weep for their weakness and failure. They worked, but ultimately, not enough.
R.I.P., insufficient cover letters and applications.
Previously from Laura Creel:
♦ Songs of My Mother: Part 1
♦Macklemore’s “Thrift Shop” Gives Us a Run for Our Money