A big hat-tip to Gordon Haber for inspiring me to do this. His “Honest Resume” (see here) was hilarious, so I’m adding my own to the fold. There are those marketable skills for the real jobs we want…and then there are our thoughts about what those skills mean, how we got them, and what awesome, real-world skills we have.
1996: BA in English and Women’s Studies (double major) from the University of Delaware, New-ARK (not to be confused with or pronounced as New-erk, NJ). Good school, good education, good friends, and lots of good diner fries & coffee.
2005: PhD in English, from an institution that never ceases to overvalue itself, which I’ll still be paying off when the kid I’m waiting to adopt is paying off college loans.
1999-2014: During and after grad school, I continually deluded myself into thinking I’d get a tenure-track professorship teaching American literature and film…in a broken system that liked to keep me just where I was (Adjunct Land, population: 70+% of the American professoriate). Taught some fun writing, literature, and adaptation studies courses. Earned near-poverty level wages teaching 8-10 classes per year, often at two schools. Moonlighted as an editor and writing tutor. For a few years, was especially adept at chasing the carrot my departments kept dangling in front of me “for when a full-time position opens up.” Kept wondering why my schools had fewer new Assistant Professors but more and more (and more) provosts and other deanlets. Wrote a book (Faulkner and Hemingway: Biography of a Literary Rivalry), gave a lot of talks, went to conferences, reviewed books, mentored capstone projects, and otherwise walked the walk…until I walked away.
2014-??: Working as a freelance copy editor, proofreader, and writing consultant. Loving every minute of it so far…especially the parts about being paid for my time, being in a field with much upward potential, being able to take on all kinds of projects, and working at home. Teaching regular literature courses to retirees at a local bookstore. Enjoying a career of no regrets.
- Rousing the rabble from the margins of academia
- Saving seats on the Post-Ac Express for other academic
- Moving deftly among my different cliques and fandoms on Twitter & Facebook
- Bringing #fancy back for my social media friends & family
- Knowing how much a perfectly placed meme can improve a blog post
How I Even
- Occasional unplugging
- Black coffee
- Irish whiskey (the aged-er, the better)
- Ear plugs (when working, flying, or taking the train)
- Aleve (when flying, taking long car trips, or dealing with tendonitis)
- Listening to my dog snore while he sleeps on furniture he didn’t pay for
- Graduate teaching award, spring 2003.
- That’s about it.
- Not making people laugh or think (or laugh and think)
- Losing my wit
- Losing my audience
- Regretting my switch to post-ac (…yeah, that’s not going to happen)