Sunday, July 22, 2007

I want this to happen to me!

I just read a book.

This is not news, since I read many books...however, this particular book, although it DID make me laugh a lot (out-loud...to myself...on the train...), it also depressed me.

The book?

Bitter is the New Black by Jen Lancaster

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&EAN=9780451217608&itm=1

Jen Lancaster and I have a great deal in common. Like myself (and many other people) Jen was laid-off from her job. Perhaps our similarities end there. Jen was a driven businesswoman, making six figures and had people working for her. I was new to the workforce, eager and enthusiastic and determined to do my best at my job (answering phones for a powerful theatre company). I was far from being any kind of a businesswoman...much more like a flighty artist just happy to be working "in the industry". Jen worked in Chicago...I worked in New York City. Jen is a blond...I am a brunette.

Like myself, Jen went on a million interviews after her layoff. She started applying to absolutely everything, just like I did. (Except Jen applied to repair airplanes. I applied to assist puppeteers!)

Jen and I both had some fabulous interviews for jobs that we were perfectly qualified for, and then never heard from the places ever again.

(I'd like to now remind you of that interview I had...in that office that plans awards ceremonies for advertising...when the woman shook my hand, said, "Welcome Aboard!" and didn't hire me.)

Frustrated, she began to keep a blog, which gained her a following, and eventually, a book deal...now she'll never have to go on another job interview ever again and can pursue her writing.

She is OFFICIALLY a writer now!

THIS is where I start to get depressed.

Why can't this happen to me?!

I want to be a writer! That is all I have ever wanted. When I was in the 4th grade, my teacher signed my yearbook and wrote, "I hope if you ever use a penname, you will let me know who you are so I'll know to buy all your books." I feel like I am letting down multitudes of people because I CANNOT officially say that I am a writer. I just don't know what to do! What is the next step?

Oh, Jen Lancaster. You set out to inspire and entertain, but you have only given me a mirror to see what a failure I have become!!!!!

I did appreciate part of the subtitle as well...Why You Should Never Carry a Prada Bag to the Unemployment Office.

When I went on unemployment (after I got laid-off!) I had to go to an orientation at the Department of Labor building on 54th Street. I had a job interview later in the day, and needed to look my professional best!

However, my mom scolded me when she saw me in my Ann Taylor dress and pearls.

Mom: You CANNOT go to the unemployment office dressed like that!!!!

Me: Why not???

Mom: Because then they'll think you have money and don't need unemployment and will take it away from you!

I am pretty sure that is not true. I think I could have pulled up to that office in my Rolls Royce, in a fur coat (in May, whatever), throwing diamonds around and they STILL wouldn't have been able to take away my unemployment insurance.

I am no longer on unemployment.

I have a job now.

But when do I get to become a writer?!

Diana Rissetto