Sunday night, over Instant Messenger, I helped my ten-year-old niece Jaycie with a writing project. She was working on her application to be a reporter for her elementary school’s newspaper. I’m still a little surprised that my heart withstood the utter cuteness of her applying for the job in the first place, much less the absolute adorableness of her essay which included things like this:
Third, I have had previous experience. Last year, my friends and I had started a magazine and I was a reporter. Also, last year I was editor for our newsletter for a month. That is how I have had previous experience.
I gave her some advice about not starting all her sentences with I and a little bit about inverted pyramid, that she should should put her most important qualifications at the top and the least important at the bottom.
While she was writing her essay she talked to me about how much she wanted the job and hoped that she got it. I told her that she should get it because she asks “Why?” more than any other person on the planet. Once she was done with her essay we had a little chat about rejection.
Jaycie: i can’t believe i did it in about an hour and a half
Me: reporters have to be fast
Me: so it’s good practice
Jaycie: if i don’t get it i can try it in the winter too
Me: awesome. most writers get rejected the first time around. just remember that in case it happens. it’s sort of a badge of honor for writers
Me: i get rejected all the time
Jaycie: i feel like i can get it
Me: i think you can get it too
Jaycie: i am nervous and excited at the same time
Me: i know how that goes
Jaycie: you do?
Me: yes i do
I think the rejection reminder was more for me than it was for her.