Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Outside PR Cover Letter

I am writing in this blog for the first time in years because I went to apply for my dream job-- a social media coordinator for a fitness organization-- and they recommended applying via blog. As a general policy, if somebody I'm desperately trying to impress makes a recommendation, I take it. Hence, my cover letter:
Dear Sir or Madam,
Thank you so much for taking the time to review my application. My name is Colette Des Georges, and I will be graduating from Lewis and Clark College this December. Like every idealistic new graduate, I am looking for a career that I can devote myself to. I chose to apply to Outside PR because it combines two of my greatest passions-- social networking and fitness and because it seems to match perfectly with my set of skills. As an english major I am (hopefully) more than capable of expressing myself interestingly and articulately. I have experience working with social media professionally, running the facebook page for a nationally rank cancer center, and I have extensive personal experience as well. I have a personal Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter account (as well as this now-defunct blog, which actually had several entries picked up by other websites.) I have written for online magazines, including one fitness one, and I am a contributing member of sites like Buzz Feed and Reddit. I also happen to run every day and hike on the weekends. I would really love the chance to interview for the position, and will be returning to California on December 20th. I will be available by phone or email until then. Again, thank you so much for your consideration.
Sincerely, Colette Des Georges

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Five Bestsellers on the Top 100 List that WILL Become Movies

1.       The Hunger Games: This series was honestly probably written with film adaptation in mind… it’s all action and chase scenes and token romantic subplots and, on top of that, it’s absurdly popular. With the teen/ young adult demographic. Which translates in movie-speak into $$$$$.  It’s probably already being filmed. I’m not going to google it, but I kinda don’t need to.
2.       The Help: It’ll be a thoughtfully cast film that Oprah will endorse. It will take the basic plot of the novel, but will also take emotional liberties. Outraged middle-aged women will ensue.
3.       Those Stephanie Plum Books: The film industry will give that same middle-aged, middle class women demographic a double hit by conglomerating this entire, ridiculously long series into one chick-flick adventure film. It’ll probably have somebody like Sandra Bullock in it, and the plot will revolve around her love escapades thinly laced together by the actual crime fighting. (The books are about a thirty-something New Jersey bounty hunter with two boyfriends and a fast metabolism). It’ll do pretty well and some people will go out and buy it before it passes quietly and contentedly into movie oblivion.
4.       In the Garden of the Beasts: About the American ambassador in Nazi Berlin. They will put time and effort into this movie. It will get good reviews. Most people will have no idea that it was based off of a book.
5.       Jaycee Dugard’s book: This will DEFINITELY be a movie. Maybe it will debut on Lifetime. Probably it will. Many will watch. Everyone will come out of it with the exact same feeling they had going into it- morbidly fascinated and chilled to the bone.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Power of a Word

Let's say you want to recommend a book to someone, but you are a horrible person and don't read. That's okay! All you need is the one giant word emblazoned on the book's cover, and you'll know exactly who to recommend it to.

Moving: People who watch Oprah
Poignant: People who watch the news
Thought-Provoking: Middle-aged men with dens and heavy eyebrows
Visceral: The hipster you want to impress
Dazzling: Women who wear red lipstick
Thrilling: People who don’t read
Fun: Other people who don’t read
Titillating: People who read too much
Quirky: Internet nerds
Ground-breaking: People who pay their bills on time.
Awesome: Everyone
Presh!: No one

Growing Up With Books

The way we view things changes so much as we get older…
Charlotte’s Web: Terrific, radiant, humble animals
Lord of the Flies: Evil oppressors of psychotic young Brits
Animal Farm: Human greed and cruelty incarnate
Rain Babies: What? No such thing. Babies come from dew drops, silly.
Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret: Sex is a thing. It is a part of growing up.
Modernism in general: Sex. Sex. Sexity sex sex. SEEEEEEX.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: …will probably inherit an enormous magical facility for making candy
Harry Potter: … will probably go to a magical school and grow up to save the world
Oliver Twist: … will probably fall in with a ragamuffin group of petty criminals headed by an abusive drunkard
Are You My Mother?: No cats.
The Princess Diaries: Cat is a pet. Unremarkable.
Harry Potter: Cats are pets. Unremarkable unless actually a wizard in disguise.
Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats ( T.S. Eliot): Cats dance around and do magic tricks and participate in all kinds of crazy f***ery
Allegories for Christ
The Chronicles of Narnia: Jesus is a lion.
Maniac Magee: Jesus is a white kid.
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest: Jesus is a Texan.
The Future
Ender’s Game: People use kids’ play for death
A Clockwork Orange: Kids use people’s death for play

Five Worst Castings of Literary Characters

Making a book into a movie is like insulting the latest ipad- ostensibly innocent, but absolutely guaranteed to outrage some nerds.
Here's the top five casting choices that make me think the nerds might be totally justified:

1) Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon: Okay, here's the thing: Dan Brown really went absurdly out of his way to outline what he wanted for his main character to be. The man is described REPEATEDLY as "Harrison Ford in Harrison tweed". It's not the subtlest, most tasteful thing in the world, but it gets the point across. Sorry, but Mr. Hanks and his inexplicable hair-do do not fit the bill. Can't get the actual Harrison Ford? Fine. It's Hollywood. There are a MILLION backups. If there's one thing I know about aspiring actors in LA, it's that aspiring actors are pretty much everyone in LA. Seriously. If you needed a lesbian Chinese dwarf with a lazy eye and a good singing voice, you could probably find one. An Indiana Jones look-alike should be nothing at all.

2) Elijah Wood as Frodo Baggins: Frodo of the LOTR books is supposed to be a middle-aged hobbit with- get this- a stiff upper lip! The substitution of youth and beauty for age and stoicism, I can forgive... it's just the hollywood standard- but where did the toughness go??? Youth is fine, but we could have been spared HOURS of that goddamned simpering! Did no one else notice that the kid only has one damn face? Not EVERY situation warrants a doe-eyed look of terror.

3) Keanau  Reeves as Don John is Much Ado About Nothing: Reeves pretty much universally takes the cake for worst roles ever. He was also a wildly inappropriate choice for Jonathan Harper in Bram Stoker's Dracula, but he got that role too. I just don't understand how whoever was casting this read one of Shakespeare's greatest comedies and said "hmm. You know who'd be good for this role? That dude from speed.... yeah. He'd be perfect here."

4) Nicholas Cage as the Sorcerer in The Sorcerer's Apprentice: Okay, I'm gonna level with you... I didn't even READ this book... but I can still tell you that N Cage was a bad call. N Cage is ALWAYS a bad call.

5)Mickey Rooney as Mr. Yunioshi from Breakfast at Tiffany's: Not only was this the most patently racist thing EVER, but it was also just utterly absurd. Why? Why Mickey? Why not somebody who was actually Japanese? Why not pretty much ANYBODY else?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Top 5 Banned Books of 2010

1.       The ttyl Series: a series about teenage girls written in text message format, and supposedly quite realistic.
Reasons: Nudity, sex, drugs, swear words
Okay, let’s address the “nudity” claim. I would like to point out that this is a BOOK. So, what, did she describe the nudity? If so, WHO CARES? They are WORDS… and since sex is a different category one assumes that these aren’t even sexualized words. If your kid can’t handle the word “breast,” then for God’s sake, remove said child from English class and invest immediately in a psychotherapist who can help him or her overcome his/her obviously stunted emotional development.
2.       And Tango Makes 3: a children’s book about two male penguins who adopt and raise a baby penguin
Reasons: Homosexuality
Um, I’m sorry? Is this committee actually overtly suggesting homophobia as a legitimate objection to a children’s book? Like, they’re not even going to try to find some sort of figurehead excuse? How is this considered acceptable?!!! It’s like a politician calling for a boycott of Woody Allen movies because “Jews are icky.”
3.       The Perks of Being a Wallflower: First person account of the complications of life as a teenager.
Reasons: Homosexuality (again), sex, swear words, religious perspective
Reading that list is like playing a game of “Which One Doesn’t Belong?”  I can’t believe the presence of a religious perspective is grounds for banning. I mean, kids have to know… they do exist. I respect the need to maintain an unbiased curriculum, but these books aren’t just not required- they’re banned. As in, the library is not allowed to stock them. Again, I feel that the children here are being somewhat underestimated… I have total faith that little Sally will be able to read a fictional novel without immediately converting to the main characters particular affiliation. One would hope.
4.       To Kill a Mockingbird: Oh, you know this… Or you’d better.
Reasons: Racism, swearing
First of all, this book is not promoting racism… actually just the opposite. Is it banned because racism is upsetting? If so, then that school must have one limited curriculum. I’d like to see how they managed the history classes without war. And also, I find it absurd that racism is abhorred but sexual discrimination is actively participated in. This board sucks.
5.       Twilight: The whole teenaged vampire thing.
Reasons: sex
No comment.
As for the issues I didn’t address- I would like to reply simply by listing a few titles and the themes therein.
Romeo and Juliet: teen suicide, sex among minors, murder, sexual innuendoes, swearing
Greek classics: Incest, murder, bestiality, suicide, sexism, racism, drugs (LOTUS)
The Bible: incest, sexism, racism, bestiality, murder, genocide, favoritism, religious perspective (s), cannibalism, torture, prostitution, theft, betrayal, death, gambling, homosexuality, homophobia, apocalypse… and many, many more.
I rest my case.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Awesome Accessories... In Books

Books/ myths have a lot to offer fashion-wise for entertainment that is almost entirely non-visual. Here are my top picks for fictional accessories, as well as some more realistic manifestations if you are inclined to make one of them your own.

1. Dorothy's Ruby Slippers: The sequined-up fire-engine pumps you wore every day when you were six may be a bit much for the modern workplace, but luckily there's a very neat equivalent over here in the real world in the form of a little brand called Ferragamo. These babies are all about their signature red underbellies, and if you flash these around enough, you can probably also get wherever you want to. Mostly because if you have Ferragamos, then you probably have money, and money = access to EVERYTHING!

2. Miss Havesham's Wedding Dress: If you had one of these, you'd never want to take it off either.

3.The One Ring: You don't even need a real- life equivalent... you can buy the real thing. Seriously. I saw it in one of those in-flight magazines. You can order an exact copy of the ring that could destroy middle earth. I mean, minus the actual destructive capacities. I guess if you want hardcore authenticity you could buy this and a nuclear weapon off of the black market, but I'd advise against it; you'd probably wake up the next morning in Guantanamo Bay. If you just want the whole invisible thing, just throw on a white Hanes tee, Uggs, and some skinny jeans. Trust me, no one will notice you. *Switch Uggs into Rainbows if you live on the West Coast.

4.The Sorting Hat: Okay, there's no real equivalent here, but if you want a witch's hat, just go to any Halloween store. If you want a hat that also provides you with an automatic group with which to align yourself, here are some possible options:
  • Ironic Trucker Hat- Why, just pop on over to your local American Apparel! There, you will find a wonderful sample population of your new posse. You'll have a grand old time bonding over PBRs and bemoaning the way MGMT has completely sold out
  • Beret-Hooray, beret! You'll fit right in with the artsy, the intellectual, the whimsical, the European, and the pretentious. Simply pick your poison! They'll accept you no questions asked, because this hat, she speaks- she speaks for you.
  • Fedora- Rock on. Your new friends are at Paramore.
  • Baseball Cap- oh, well aren't you just so cool and laid back and attractive. Fine. Just go find your requisite group of hot guy friends and play Madden all night and be awesome.
  • Derby Hat- Congrats on your recent assention into the English aristocracy! Tell Will and Kate I say hi.

5. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Just tote your fav volumes of the Encyclopedia Britannica. What's that? You don't have freakish Goliath-like strength? Fine. I guess an iphone would work, too.

6. Holden's Red Hunting Cap: This has the potential to be atrocious or cute. Here is a cute one. Just please refrain from whining about phonies while you're wearing it.

7. Mary Poppins' Magic Purse (later usurped by Hermoine's clutch in the last Harry Potter book): There isn't anything that expands magically yet, but a good solid boho bag should do the trick. Those things could fit a twelve year old child in there. If you literally have so much stuff that you can't fit it all in one of these, then A & E has a show called "Hoarders" them.

8.Holly Golightly's Sunglasses: The movie kind of did this for you... go hit up a Ray Bans.

9.Hermes' Sandals: Okay, there are two ways you can go here... stylistically, if you're craving the ancient Greek, you can slap on a pair of gladiators or lace-ups. You could even rock bandage heels and pretend you're somewhere in the realm of authenticity. (Even though you're really not). If it the transportation is what you crave, they have those sneakers with the wheels in the heels. And of course, there's always roller blades (especially effective when strapped to fireworks!). If you just want to feel like you are walking on air, then invest in some temperpedic slippers. They're expensive, but let me tell you something: they are so. fucking. comfortable.

10. Hester Prynne's Scarlet Letter: A normal person wouldn't want a badge that alerted all the world to their greatest personal mistake. But if you're not a normal person, then iron-on patches are for you. Be a total hippy and put them on your canvas purses, your torn jeans, your ratty caps... whatever floats your boat. You're welcome to actually get a big red "A", but you could also go for something cuter/ more normal like a car logo or a peace sign. Again, up to you.