None of my 3 jobs have given me any work, so I’m basically still unemployed. The real world is confusing.

The downtime is giving me ideas I never would have thought of before, like wanting to take our kitten for a walk. I went to Walmart to buy him a harness and leash, and was faced with quite a conundrum. The smallest size (for dogs, because they don’t make them for cats) only came in two patterns: pink with polka dots or black with skulls. Pink polka dots felt wrong for a boy cat, but skulls? Really? A bit too intense for my cuddly little babypantspie. So I went with polka dots. I took him outside when I got home and he just collapsed onto the sidewalk, paralyzed with fear.

Another uncharacteristic thing I did yesterday: went to the library. I avoid libraries because I never got the hang of the card catalogue (surely outdated now) or call numbers (even though my mom insists this system was designed to be understood even by the mentally retarded). So to avoid embarrassment I just buy all my books on Amazon.

Let me illustration how wholly unfamiliar I am with libraries. I’ve been wanting to read the new book in the Traveling Pants series, but because it’s fairly new and isn’t in paperback yet, it costs more than $10 used on Amazon (and I refuse to pay more than $10 for a book or anything else in my life). So these were my thoughts about the topic, verbatim: Ugh! It’s way too expensive! I’m going to have to wait until it comes out in paperback, but that could be months away and I really have my heart set on reading it now! This sucks! If only there were a way to read books for free!

The concept of the library literally did not occur to me until I was walking through town yesterday and found myself standing in front of one. So I went in. Unfortunately, the Traveling Pants book was all checked out. And, equally unfortunately, I stumbled across a book with the same name as the book I just wrote, written about the topic I wrote about! What the hell?

A couple weeks ago I began querying agents for my book. To those of you who did not spend the past few months researching the publication process after having spent the past few years stowed away in your room alone but for the sound of your own typing, a query letter is what you send to agents describing your book so that they can take one quick look and then reject you through a generic form e-mail, without having actually read a single word of your manuscript. You need an agent before you can get a publisher, and the chances of landing any given agent are about as good as any given sperm being the one to fertilize the egg.

I thought this would be a good time to welcome more rejection into my life, having not gotten nearly my fill after the demoralizing past few months that have been my job search. I’ve gotten about a dozen agent rejections so far, ranging from “You have an interesting idea for a book, and there’s a lot to like about your approach. But in the end I’m afraid that I didn’t come away quite fully convinced it was something I’d be able to represent successfully. I’m grateful for the chance to review it nonetheless, and best of luck to you in finding it the right home” all the way to “No, thanks.”

I leave you with a picture of Ketos, courtesy of Christina Nord.