Selling myself (79/100)

I look at my inbox and I feel the heartburn swell. I look at the spreadsheet I created for my job search and my scalp becomes itchy. I try to breath, to keep myself calm before sitting down to write this piece and I feel like a fraud. Identity is a difficult thing when you’re searching for work. I’ve questioned my ability, skill and personality so many times in the last two months that it’s easy for my brain to overwhelm my emotions. That’s when I shut down and I stare at this screen for a while. Time is lost. I get an alert of an email from a recruiter that she should hear something soon about a gig. I would be buoyed but I’m already reconsidering who I am.

“I’m a writer,” I tell myself. And I know that I am. But maybe being a writer isn’t working out. Maybe I should get back into sales like that summer living in Denver, where I rode the bus into the time-dilation field that is Boulder every morning. It was a job I surrendered to because I had to. I wrote scripts for a weekly digital comic I was doing with a friend on the ride and that kept me feeling connected to myself until my friend couldn’t continue. And then the job went from “Sales Person of the Week is David” to unemployed.

There’s a pattern I purchased while walking through a craft fair in Denver. It’s a maze of thick white, erratic lines like from a place mat. The lines are made to look 3D, with depth provided by shading. It’s pedestrian. Like a kid made it but at the time I liked it a lot, so we bought a print. I tried to talk with the artist about what other work they did, Lindsay there as support as I often struggled to talk with artists about working on comics with me, but they didn’t understand. Their response was stiff and nervous and I responded in kind, thanking them and walking away. The nervousness of selling yourself in a pattern on a print that I tucked away in my backpack.