I’m back to being depressed again. I woke up feeling depressed; then I had a trip to the dentist. I shook a bit, which was what I was really scared of, plus I had to have a small filling. I’ve never had a filling before and I always was proud of myself for not having had any. I suppose I turned it into some kind of moral achievement, which I now don’t have, plus I feel weird that there’s something non-organic embedded in me now. The dentist did say I take good care of my teeth, though. It was a small filling, so the dentist did it without anaesthetic so there wasn’t any numbness afterwards. It didn’t hurt. Then, I got in a complete mess when I was paying because they didn’t take credit cards. I had remembered that and brought my cheque book, but I messed it up; I’m so used to writing my date of birth on job applications, that I started to write it on the check and then I started worrying what else I was doing wrong and just got generally flustered. I think the receptionist could see and asked if I was OK. My CBT therapist says I shouldn’t think that other people think I’m weird, but sometimes it’s hard not to.
I tried submitting another job application, but I’m not nearly experienced enough for it. I don’t meet all the essential criteria, let alone the desirable ones. And I would struggle to pass myself off as “confident, organised and enthusiastic”. They wanted a CV and a covering letter and an application form, which basically amounted to them asking for the same information three times over. This is not much fun to do even if you aren’t depressed.
Someone using the website I’ve been using to try to get proofreading work has invited me to pitch for a job. It’s translating and proofreading a Vietnamese Young Adult novel. I suspect my Vietnamese-reading skills are probably not up to it. I’m guessing the person wanting the work just tagged everyone who listed “proofreading” as a skill in the hope someone would be able to do it.
I got another job rejection yesterday, plus haven’t heard anything back from the people who gave me a proofreading test and so I am wondering if I set my number of words per minute too low. I don’t really know what is considered ‘normal’ or what I could reasonably do. I desperately want to build some kind of career, yet every time I try, I run into barriers I can’t get through. I try to turn to friends for support where I can, but that doesn’t always help either, because I don’t always know how to phrase the questions or they’re not willing/able to help or I’m worried about overloading them. Possibly I just need to accept rejection and push through, but it’s hard when I have zero income and am entirely dependent on my parents.
E. said that I put in a lot of effort to try to do things or change my life for the better, but it always seems to backfire and I get minimal positive outcome. I’m glad she said that, because I was worried it was just my imagination/pessimism. This is why I get so upset by the miracle stories I see on Jewish websites. I can think of a couple of articles I’ve seen where the writer was facing serious economic problems and/or contemplating working in a soul-destroying menial job instead of following his/her dream of writing when suddenly they got a perfect writing job because God loves him/her. Right. So obviously God hates me. I think I’d rather think I’m just useless and can’t get a job.
In other worried/depressed news, I’m worried that my Doctor Who book won’t get published and I’ll have wasted the time I spent on it. I think I say some new and interesting things, but also there is a certain amount of necessary repetition of standard fan opinions. I’ve tried to challenge them where possible, but sometimes the clichés are clichés because they’re true and need repeating for the new fans who haven’t read them in fanzines and Doctor Who Magazine for the last thirty years. The problem is that I don’t really know anything about the economics of book publishing or the wider Doctor Who fan market, whether this is the type of thing that might appeal. I worry that it’s a type of writing that is rather out of date in Doctor Who fandom.
I wish I had more fan friends who could give me feedback. I wish I hadn’t fallen out with the fan friends I did have. Although the book originated in blog posts, I never seemed to have more than a few readers, judging from the comments, and can’t tell how popular the posts were. I suppose I shouldn’t worry as there isn’t much else I can do at this stage. I’m just desperate to build some kind of writing career, having failed in my librarianship career. I can at least self-publish, but I’m wary of doing that, as I have zero idea of how to promote a self-published book and can’t imagine it selling. Plus, I would like the kudos of having an independent publisher.
Working on my book makes me feel somewhat less miserable and even refreshed, even despite my worries about publication and whether I’ve really said much that’s new or worthwhile. It could be that rather than a publish/reject binary I could be sent a list of changes to make, which could be frustrating, but would also be a learning curve for me, given that I know little about writing and publishing books (as opposed to reading or cataloguing them).
I feel bad about prioritising my book over further job applications or Torah study (I managed less than a quarter of an hour today because of depression), but it is sort of my job at the moment and the only thing that I feel good about, so perhaps it’s inevitable that I will prioritise it.
That was about all the productive things I did today, other than cook dinner. I started watching I Claudius, which I wouldn’t have done if I’d realised the first episode was well over an hour and a half long (it was split in two for the US audience). It was good, but I wasn’t really in the mood for something requiring a fair amount of concentration because of complex character inter-relations and dialogue that consisted largely of exposition, setting out who is related to who, who is in love with who, who is plotting against who and so on.