Resume redesign, or crisis begets creativity

What does it take to get a good job in news (or media in general)? That’s the $4000 question swimming in my head right now.

I will even make my resume look remotely like a newspaper–complete with flag, skyboxes, sidebars, datelines–designed with copy editing principles in mind (and also inspired by Plaid’s awesome Merry Newsinator, but a bit less merry).

This started out as something to relieve the stress that has been simmering since I finished my internship in September.

Working on it was a delightful break from the monotony of checking emails, reading job boards and mining my address book for any contacts I have not yet exhausted.

As much as I hate being in this situation, I believe crisis begets the best kind of creativity, which is something I learned from this trash artist that we interviewed for our in-depth reporting project on the closing of a county’s landfill. She said that much of the best art she’s seen comes from some trauma that the artist experiences. To me, crisis forces you to stretch yourself and ask questions like “What have I not tried yet? Why not?”

Doing this also made me realize that I want to be doing something creative with my life (and getting paid for it). I know I don’t have any formal design training (i.e., a degree in graphic design or experience other than designing for personal sites and laying out dummy pages) and I don’t want to automatically call myself a designer just because I know how to use Photoshop or InDesign, but I just love it.

Or it could be just that I like big type and I cannot lie. You other type nerds can’t deny that when type is on your screen in all caps and 72 px, you get sprung.

Which leads me to further refine my ideal job: some marriage of reporting/writing and creativity/design, such as an online multimedia producer, marketing specialist, or some publication’s layout editor.

On the upside, I’m still counting my blessings. I saw the sunrise today and I took a picture, but even that doesn’t do it justice. It had  these colors:

Another sunrise is another day to get where I need to go. It’s like the rest of my life is waiting for me to get my act together and start living.


5 thoughts on “Resume redesign, or crisis begets creativity

  1. Speaking as a journalist, I kind of like your application, although I’d offer two caveats:

    1) A professor once told us that if you’re going to submit a resume like this, try to make sure beforehand that it would be appreciated by the person receiving it. i.e. Stodgy, 80-year-old city desk editor Buzz Killington wouldn’t be impressed with this vs. a normal resume.

    2) If you are shooting for a good design, try to throw in a picture. Do you have a candid shot taken of you interviewing someone for a story? Failing that, a professional-looking headshot would also work.

    I take it you’re checking Journalism Jobs for openings, right? That’s normally the best resource for openings, but as a warning, I’ve heard that anything posted there has been getting HUGE responses. One shop I know of in Rhode Island got 75 resumes for an entry-level, $23k job.

    • Thank you for your input; it is much appreciated!

      1) Duly noted.

      2) I have a picture of me and an HD camera shooting some footage together. Or is that not professional enough?

      Yes sir, and J-jobs has been fruitless thus far, so I’ve basically given up on online job boards and now concentrating my efforts on mining my network for contacts. : )

      • 2) I think that would be appropriate, yeah. It also allows the editor to get a glimpse of “you”, putting a face to a faceless application.

        Mining your networks is a good idea. Although I found my first two JJobs on, it was the references I gave them that convinced them to hire me.

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