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The Fabulous Adventures of Astera: Writer/Actress for Hire

Meet Astera (aka: me), a star in her own mind. Our plucky little heroine has embarked on not one but two difficult, low-paying career paths: writing and acting. Witness the menial jobs! The unreasonable demands! The quirky friends and family! And the glimmer of success just ahead! Through it all, Astera maintains her core beliefs: 1) She is destined to be fabulous 2) Everything is more fun with a cocktail.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Job Searching

Okay, all facetious job applications aside (see "More Fun With Craigslist" post), my job search is becoming discouraging in a hurry. I have revamped my resume. I have let friends and family know I am on the hunt. I have scoured various Internet sites for job postings. I have applied for multiple jobs. And so far...bupkis.

Well, that's not entirely true. Here's what's happened:

Real Estate Leads
*I interviewed for a broker's assistant position with a Realtor in Huntington Beach, and he wants me to come back for a second interview. It would probably be a decent job, and the pay is pretty good, but it's a long commute.
*I am going to a presentation from First Team Real Estate this evening, and I have a meeting with the manager of their Dana Point office next week.
*I had an interview with a real estate staffing service that provides pre-screened Realtors on a temporary basis to new home communities. The hope is that their candidates will eventually be hired full-time by the builders. That agency was really nice and invited me to come in for training, but if I do get sent out by them, the pay is only $11 an hour. It's like a paid try-out for a full-time job with one of the builders, and with the slowdown in the housing market, who knows if that's a good risk to take?
* I went to an open interview with the Irvine Company to see about being a leasing coordinator, but since I would like to make more than $35,000 a year, that's not going to work out too well.

Writing/Editing/Etc. Leads
*I did an editing test for a local book publisher, and I am hoping I'll here back about that.
* I have an interview next week for a contract editing and writing job.
* I had a phone interview for a tutoring position.
* I signed up with AppleOne and I took their assessment tests. I can type 67 wpm, I can do data entry with 100 percent accuracy, and I scored a 97 out of 100 on the Microsoft Word test. I believe this qualifies me to make $14 an hour as an administrative assistant somewhere, if I take the Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude, college honors, and master's degree off of my resume.

Mr. Pink says I shouldn't get so discouraged, especially since I have been looking for a job for only about two weeks now. The problem is that I feel like I am either over-qualified or under-qualified for everything that I'd like to do. For instance, I'd like to use my copywriting skills to find a job in advertising or marketing, but whenever I see those jobs advertised, they demand a minimum of two years of agency experience. I could certainly perform those job duties, and perform them well, but when I apply, my resume gets ignored because I don't have the precise experience they require--I am technically "underqualified."

I have also tried to get more entry-level positions, such as marketing coordinator, but I have a suspicion that those jobs go to people straight out of college who don't mind making $28,000 a year. And yes, money is a factor. I don't want to take a job that pays $12 an hour just for the "experience." But maybe I am going to have to.

Advice and suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


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