Lexifabricographer For when the right word just won’t do…

April 12, 2007

Let me tell you how good I am

Filed under: workin for the man — lexifab @ 10:49 am

Central to my career-long failure to move into a career that suits me better is this: I loathe writing job applications in general and my resume in particular.

You wouldn’t think it would be that hard – I like writing, I write about myself every single day (ahem) on Lexifab, surely I can string together a few pages of self-promoting puffery to convince potential employers of my great worth?

Uh, no. Every single word I type is like extracting teeth. Apparently I would rather do work – the work I am so desperate to escape, mind you – than take the time to sit down and update my CV for half an hour. There are some terribly annoying instincts lurking in my reptile brain, and apparently attempting to convince someone that I am wonderful creates a mental black hole that sucks in and crushes my will.

Stupid procrastination. Must. Channel. Hatred. Of. Current. Work!


  1. When you update your CV, don’t forget to mention how you invented the internet. I’ve been claiming this in grant applications for a few years now, and I think it’s starting to get results! 🙂

    Comment by Dr Clam — April 12, 2007 @ 7:18 pm

  2. I completely and utterly understand.
    Dissociate, if you can. Pretend you’re writing about someone else, about how fantastic they are (and how they invented the internet).
    Deadlines are great, because you can just focus on churning it out and send it moments before it is due; and by the time what you actually wrote has sunk in, it is too late for regrets.

    Comment by emmajeans — April 12, 2007 @ 11:17 pm

  3. You have summarised my entire academic career in a few short, brilliant words right there.

    Lucky for me I went on to invent the internet.

    Comment by lexifab — April 13, 2007 @ 9:43 am

  4. My biggest problem is remembering what I’ve done and when. I’ve got to the point now where I have a master CV that I update at the start of new projects etc so I can keep an updated with everything copy to hack down to relevant info.
    It also helps a lot if you take the bare bone of what you have done to someone else with a similar career who’s been working longer. They can tell you how to reword things so they sound cool and self-promoting. I find this helps as I can say “surely I’m not that good” and they say “no, this is what you did. Put it down.” This way your self-promoting puffery is someone elses opinion – not your own. All care, no responsibility.

    Comment by Jenny — April 13, 2007 @ 10:57 am

  5. This is, of course, exactly what I did (since yesterday’s comment).

    Mind you, since it is supposed to be a 2-page outline of my so-called virtues, my “someone else” immediately stripped it back to the point where it contains no elaborate claims of achievement whatsoever. It’s hardly seems cool or self-promoting at all. What worries ne about this approach is the implication that I might have to impress potential new employers verbally instead. There lies a whole new barrel of yikes.

    Comment by lexifab — April 13, 2007 @ 1:17 pm

  6. I know there are agencies which will write CVs and selection criteria for you.
    (I’m not sure there are agencies which will show up to the interview for you.)

    Comment by emmajeans — April 14, 2007 @ 9:01 am

  7. Now that sounds like a good unexploited business niche… I guess most of the ‘Masters of a Thousand Faces’have more lucrative employment already in counter-counter-intelligence and suchlike.

    Comment by Dr Clam — April 14, 2007 @ 10:15 am

  8. I think I’d draw the line at getting someone else to write it. It’s not that what comes out is bad, it’s just that it takes so damned long.

    Now I want to be a super-spy. Who’s advertising for them at the moment? Anyone?

    Comment by lexifab — April 14, 2007 @ 10:40 am

  9. Wasn’t there a job advert for intelligence agents for ASIO in the weekend Australian a couple of weeks back? I remember the job description, though it wasn’t actually stated, sounded like an undercover operative description. They wanted people who were confident, could work independently, could gain peoples trust and could persuade people to do what they wanted (or such like). Perhaps not for you.

    Comment by Jenny — April 16, 2007 @ 3:04 pm

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