tehuti: (Tehuti)
I was literally just about to post this to my blog last week when the Halloween Blizzard took out Comcast, plunging our household into darkness for two days. And by darkness, I mean no internet or cable access. It was a truly harrowing experience. OK, mostly it was just inconvenient, and we we especially lucky, considering that even now, hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses still don't have power five days later. But that's another post. Last week, I went on my most promising job interviews yet, and after a bunch of curious questions on Facebook, I figured it would be easier to tell everyone at once.

After a couple of months of almost nothing (a grand total of one interview since July), I suddenly found myself with multiple potential employers on my radar. A week ago Monday, I went on my most promising interview, and that's the one I talked about on Facebook that prompted this post. Here is the promised update, filling in most of the blanks.

The job I interviewed for is with a place called the Academic and Behavioral Clinic. I met the head clinician at a job fair at the Basketball Hall of Fame. Under her direction, I would do assessments on children and teens, up to college age, and develop treatment plans to help them overcome their issues, whatever they might be. Part of the job is in-home, some is out patient, and starting next year, a day program will begin for developmentally disabled teens and adults. They specifically are looking for people that are non-traditional and non-threatening, to immediately put clients and their families at ease. Basically, if you look like a social worker, that's what they don't want. And I don't. :-) Each person working for the clinic has their own clientele, and makes their own hours. You can work as much or as little as you want. That flexibility would be fantastic for us. 

They also want people that have teaching experience, which I have. If you have experience with the system, or with therapy, that's a plus. I have some of both. Finally, they prefer people with graduate degrees, because that proves that you are intelligent, can learn new skills quickly and aren't afraid of writing and paperwork. So my expensive diploma, even though it isn't in psychology, is what got me in through the door in the first place.

The interview really wasn't. It was more like a couple of people sitting down to get to know each other. I made quite an impression on the director and the office manager at the job fair, and it continued through the interview process. I met with the manager once for about 90 minutes, and the director for over two hours. They like me, I like them, and we all want for me to come on board. After the first interview Monday, I received a pre-employment packet, which required a renewed CPR card, thick application, professional references and a physical and TB test. They told me to have it back in ten days, and no one had done it faster than twelve.

I did it in four. Don't challenge me. ;-)

My packet went to Boston last Saturday. All I can do now is wait. So all digits crossed!
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It’s been longer than I intended between blog posts. But isn’t that usually the way of these things? There’s always something more important to do, right? So this morning (as it is morning when I right this, if 6am counts as morning), I’m taking advantage of car time to write. Nothing like being trapped in a car to encourage writing.

I’m trapped in the car at 6am on a Saturday because we’re going to New York for the day. Our destination is the Met, specifically to see the Alexander McQueen exhibit. I’ve always been a closet fashionista, and McQueen was one of the best there ever was. His tragic loss should not have been unexpected. Genius and madness and all that.

I owe a lot of updatey goodness, so I think I should start with explaining why I owe my blog so much attention. In the last two weeks, I’ve starting writing for two different websites. The first one you may already know about. I’m working freelance for Yahoo, through a service called Associated Content. It doesn’t pay very well (which is a gross understatement, as hard as that is to believe), but at this stage of my writing career, that’s not the main point. I’m writing every single day, usually on different topics, and generating clips. Clips are what it’s all about. Each one is a tiny little writing sample I can use to show what I can do. I’ve written mostly about sports and current events thus far. One of my pieces made the News Blog, and another is on the Sports page. I must be doing something right. I choose to believe I am doing something right. The reason that this market doesn’t pay well is that it is largely based on page views. The more people that read it, the more I make. So please do share my work around, if you think it’s interesting. Or even if you don’t.

The other market is more exciting. And not just because it pays better. The company is called Demand Studios. You may know them from such exciting websites as eHow.com. They use freelancers to generate all of their content. And unlike many similar sites, which are simply aggregators, they insist on original content. The content is based off of topics they gather from all over the Internet, which they throw into a massive database. The writers can pick from literally thousands of potential topics.

I’m in a probationary period with them at the moment, which means I’m only allowed to claim a limited number of topics. But I get extra attention from copy editors, so I can learn their expectations and practices. What I’m enjoying most is the opportunity to research topics that I otherwise would never do. My first assignment is on encephalitis in dogs. It’s been fun to research it, especially since they specifically disallow using sites like Wikipedia as sources. I just have to do well enough on my first three articles to pass probation, and then I’m good.

I’ve got a few other writing irons in the fire, but nothing I’m going to talk about just yet. The other thing that’s been taking up my attention is my job search. For the first time in my life, I’m looking for work with a completed college degree. Two of them, actually. What this means is that, for the first time ever, I’m not looking for a job, I’m looking for a career. And luckily, with my supportive family, I’m not in the position where I have to find and take just anything. In fact, there isn’t much economic sense in me taking a job that doesn’t make a decent percentage higher than what childcare would cost. Having me at home means Aimee is a lot more productive during her work day. So I am also looking at part time opportunities, should they be a good fit.

Thus far, I’ve answered about a dozen ads. Most of them are either in academia (like the admissions counselor job I applied for last week), or public history. I’ve had only one interview, for a part time position at a local museum, but it went really well. When I know more, I’ll let you all know as well.

It took me all day to write this, half on the way to New York, the other half on the way back, so I think it’s time for me to be done. Got more to say, but that will have to come in another post.

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tehuti

January 2012

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