Possible ways to explain these cavernous gaps in my work history:

  • It’s my kids’ fault.
  • My husband had me chained to the bed/stove/bird feeder.
  • I wasn’t “unemployed,” I was “exercising my typing muscles,” “honing my internet expertise,” and “updating my Facebook.” I “maintained a major foothold in the social media.”
  • I am a professional Twitterer/Tweeter. #ihavenolife #canonlyhandle140charactersatatime
  • My car wouldn’t start.
  • Did you check your spam file?
  • Witness relocation. Alien abduction. Psychotherapy. A series of unfortunate medical events. A Total Makeover. Reality show participant. Rehab. Nut bin. Self-medication. Playing With Myself.
  • My settlement check for suing my last job hadn’t run out.
  • Reasons. Just reasons. Don’t ask. I can’t tell you due to a court order/fear of triggering a relapse/for your own good.
  • The idea of a 9 to 5 made me feel like vomiting.
  • I was writing stories.

That last one is a real knee-slapper, don’t you think?

I need a job. Do you know anyone with a job for me? I’ll work for almost nothing.


About Anna Fonté

Girl in the Hat, aka Anna Fonté, is an author who writes about invisibility, outsider status, everyday monsters, and her attempts to befriend the neighborhood crows. The things she writes want you to look at them.


  1. Want a partner? My resume looks a lot like yours — but without any proof of that last bullet. Because they’re all in my head.

  2. macdougalstreetbaby

    “The idea of a 9 to 5 made me feel like vomiting.”
    Me too. Always. Since before I could even remember.

  3. I love your 11 bullet points. I’m loosely looking for a job too. If you find something, mention my name, please!

  4. I hope to go back to work soon after a significant period of unemployment. You’ve given me some good explanations. How about this one? –

    “I could tell you why I have an employment gap of 4 years, but then I would have to kill you.”

  5. Soon I will have to go out there with a cover letter of my own: “I was home writing smut. See attached.”

  6. You have the perfect resume for where I used to work. I think they may still be in business. I will check as soon as I finish my Argand Diagram.

  7. Okay, Averil needs to post her attachment. To your list I would add ‘contemplating climbing Mt. Everest’. I personally like my schedule for working – a couple days here, a day or two over there,and writing in between. No full time job but a scattering of part timers that fill the bank account enough to get by.

  8. Wait, here’s what people tell me. Let me know if it works.
    1. “Don’t worry. Something will come along soon.”
    2. “It wasn’t the right fit. Something will come along soon.”
    3. “It’s tough out there. Something will come along soon.”
    4. “Most people land jobs because they know someone. Do you know someone? Because if you know someone, something will come along soon.”

  9. I’m looking for a job myself Anna, lowered expectations, stale references -bring it on.

  10. Karin

    I found a job for you. Amazon needs creative writers. There is a writing job called Staff Writer – Woot!.
    You have to be funny tho. It sounds kind of stressful. Like being locked in a room with the college newspaper joke writers. Plus you would have to move to Seattle. But we could have lunch!

    • Seattle and lunch sound fabulous. Being funny for profit? I see someone in an Amazon t shirt and cap cracking a bullwhip. In fact, I’m not looking for a writing job at all– I prefer to keep my writing separate, my little secret, my whimsy, mine. (Hmmmm. Wonder what a shrink would say about that.)

      Good to know you’re on my side, Karin!

  11. Karin

    forgot to say, and you could make friends with the crows in my yard… I think they are starting to know me. I say hello crow all the time, and give them dog kibble. They swoop in after I leave it. I think they say, hey its that nice crow feeding lady when I walk by. I am starting to carry kibble in my pockets. does this mean I’m going to be a craxy old lady feeding the pigeons in the park? the thing about your writing is that you touch that part of us. You are lyrical and special.

    • Oh, Karin, you just made my day. My whole freaking week! Your lucky crows are going to get hearts in their eyes for you. BTW even after years of feeding them, they always wait for me to retreat to a respectable distance before they swoop down. That’s part of their charm, for me– eternal vigilance.

  12. Huh! My resume reads about as well as that… I call it research. An extended period of research for the novel I’m still yet to write. I just keep singing that song… “Useless, but not for long…” (Gorillaz, Clint Eastwood). For some reason, it always makes me feel better 🙂

  13. Learning to parse one’s prose down is good, but I do find tweeting for clients makes me want to zip out something short and fast, letting proofreading and rewriting fly off untapped with the twitterbird. Doesn’t it make it hard to be patient when faced with a blank computer screen demanding more than 140 characters? Best wishes for job hunting.

    • Woah. You do that for work? How did I miss that?! And tell me– it seems that good Twitterers are at it all day long, non-stop– do you do that? Honestly, I have not mastered it at all. Instead of tweeting, I sort of give a half-hearted toot, I am too busy writing full sentences, but I haven’t given up entirely.

      • Strange, but I have never set up a personal twitter account to fiddle with throughout the day. I really only tweet for a pair of restaurants, the followers of which would quickly fly away if I pestered them too often with unnecessary chirps.

  14. I would give (nearly) anything to write “spouse had me tied to the bed” in the job gap category, and be able to see the look on the interviewer’s face when they read it. You know, they might laugh; then you’d know it was a fun place to work. From the unsolicited-advice department, I’m sure you’ve heard this, which is also the same advice that advice columnists give to losers like me who can’t get a date: Volunteer as much as you can, not so much for the fact that it’s a good thing to do, as to turn the noun “network” into a dreaded verb, and to meet someone powerful enough to help get you a job that you didn’t hate. My goodness, you’d do wonders writing grants for some humanities group, though I totally agree with you about not wanting to write anything other than blogposts, fiction, poems, essays of your own choosing–it’d feel like whoring a little bit, wouldn’t it? (Though I’ve read for years about actors taking crappy roles that were beneath them, because, after all “it’s work”, if that has any bearing on anything.) Or you could work at a big-box retailer like I do; that’s pretty rewarding. I’m assuming you don’t want to teach any more, or teaching jobs are hard to get, or you really don’t wish to get re-certified to teach?

    • Kevin!

      Teaching was the hardest thing I ever did. Harder than writing a thesis or working three jobs or having two kids or writing a novel. When I taught, I’d work 70 hours a week but I’d wake up in the middle of the night and agonize about all the things I could be doing better. I just don’t have the stuff to do that any more.

      I volunteer at my daughter’s school, as a gardener in our neighborhood park, and I just applied to volunteer at the library. I really hope the library takes me on because libraries make me very, very happy.

      • You know, I’ve heard that, “3rd-hand”, I suppose you’d say, about how many unpaid hours teachers put in, but I always forget, and never really heard about it directly from a teacher, or former teacher, before. And paid or not, it’s just too many hours. Me, I couldn’t stomach reading all the bad writing along with the few good ones, if I had ever gone the way of being an English teacher (never wanted to). And I kinda assumed, even as I was writing the comment, that you were probably already “volunteering your ass off”. A library job would be wonderful, though wouldn’t it? Ah, me, I either can’t write or else I rattle on……

        • I want a paying job. It’s time, since my husband was just laid off. Wouldn’t it be nice if we were compensated just a little for all this writing we do? Or maybe we should include our blogs on our resumes as volunteering to entertain people.

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