My Desperate Cover Letter

To Whom It May Concern At Random Possible Employer,

I am writing in response to your job posting on WHATEVER in which you were looking for a junior or entry-level employee. The job description is well suited to my abilities, and, I swear, I love your business more than my own mother. Your company’s efforts to expand into online territory by doing something completely useless and underutilized really piques my interest, and I’d love to be a part of the growth in that area. I’m a child of the web and I know how important it is to the success and future of whatever your industry is, so please let me beg you for a job.

In college I did a bunch of stuff that was difficult and pretty impressive but that you don’t really care about because it was college. For good measure, though, here it is: I was the editor-in-chief of a student-run, independent magazine that operated on real-life ads and was unassociated with the university, which means I edited and proofed every story, from copy to design. After graduating from E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, which is a name that means nothing even though I was sold the opposite idea, I worked at a non-profit doing grant writing to fund a heart-lead trip to Australia, where I lived with my partner and worked as a manager and barista at a busy Sydney café until I fell out of love, but that’s a story for a different time. I am currently freelancing for two blogs while acting as a co-founder and associate editor of an online literary magazine, but none of these sites have big companies listed in the footnotes, so who cares. I’m also hard at work on a book of essays, just like everyone else. I am really great at interpersonal affairs and will work my ass off until 5 a.m., but that doesn’t matter unless I’ve got a sizeable portfolio under my belt, which I really don’t have because of some not-great life choices in my year after college.

So, that’s that. I’m a pro at web stuff. I can Tweet, Tumbl’, Facebook, Pin, email, manage content, photograph, Photoshop, edit, and more, but I’ve got little published proof of it. So what really sets me apart?

I live in Nowhere, Ohio and have been out of work for nearly six months now. I have $25,000 student loans to repay, and I’ve still got $1,500 to pay off on a laptop I had to buy when my old one died during finals week. My mom makes minimum wage and my brother lives here, too, so I can’t really come to the city to intern for free, which really seems to be the pre-interview interview for most places. I am reading article after article about the failure of most graduates to launch, and I can’t figure out if they’re supposed to grant me peace of mind or make me feel sh-tty for being one of the 50% or whatever who haven’t found real work. Thoughts of suicide run rampant, and each bill received is like a little tug on the tight rope strung around my neck.

So, I’m ready to work. I’m ready to kick whatever job I have squarely in the ass. I’m ready to whittle away at that pile of bills in front of me, ready to do away with the silly notion of suicide and that feeling of hopelessness that I know plagues so many of my friends who have left and are leaving school. There is a place for us in the world, we who are untested but are willing to prove ourselves. We have no chips on our shoulders, are not the whiny Millennials we’ve been painted as. (Coddle me if you want, though; I won’t reject you.) No, I am a kid in his twenties who needs a chance to prove himself, and a paycheck to boot.

Let me do it for you; let me kick your company’s ass into high gear. We can help each other. But, just because I know it’s what you want to hear: I can help you, and will be an invaluable asset to your company, I swear. I’m not doing this for the money or myself. I just love your company. And you: I love you a lot, personally. I will love you more if you give me a job. So will my mother. Inappropriate amounts, we will love you.

Thank you for your time, and please have the decency to let me know if I didn’t get the job. Maybe sign the rejection letter with an xoxo, just to soften the blow.

All the best,

Shane Barnes Thought Catalog Logo Mark


image – Erica Fkiaras

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