Writer Cover Letters That Bombed #1

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Since I discovered that I wanted to write professionally, I have sought out countless writing jobs. Thousands actually. I searched through my Gmail to count how many cover letters I have emailed to potential employers. Ninety-nine percent of the cover letters are pure trash. So I decided to share them. People, learn from my mistakes.

Cover to DListed.com

Greetings Michael K,

Amanda Bynes is the only person more qualified than me for this job, but she is preoccupied at the moment standing outside Drake’s hotel room since I forwarded her his exact location.

Imagine if Bieber had the charisma of Mario Lopez, and he was a journalist, that visual summarizes who I am. A focused writer with a magnetic personality who is a pop culture devotee. I can’t leave my house without logging onto Dlisted (or TMZ. Bad habit, I know. Don’t judge me). Some of the names that I have recently interviewed include Icona Pop, Skylar Grey, Ester Dean, and Pedro Almodovar.

I have experience working with tight deadlines from home and the office. Also, I have experience interviewing and reporting on musicians as well as blogging about lifestyle and cultural events like (mentally) anal probing Hot Sluts of the Day. Key skills that I bring to the table include tight editing, quick deadline writing, content generation/pitching, self-discipline, known knowledge of pop culture, an eye for target-audience writing, and most importantly, how to give face.

To see my work, I have attached two interviews and a blog post for you to peruse.

If you need more information, please feel free to email me at horriblewriter@gmail.com.

Always,

Victor Yates

P.S. Since I live in L.A., I die every time I see Angelyne and her pink car (that’s not a vagina euphemism). I cry a little every time I see Bobby Trendy being utterly untrendy. However my life won’t be complete until I see Chicken Cutlets eating at the KFC on Hollywood Blvd.

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Writing Prompt: cut up poem

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Directions:

– Take a magazine or newspaper.
– Choose an article from the magazine or newspaper
– Use a pair of scissors, to cut out the article
– Next carefully cut out each of the words from the article and put them in a brown paper bag
– Shake the bag
– Next take out each cutting one after the other
– Copy conscientiously in the order in which they left the bag (you can glue or tape down the words in your notebook or write them out)
– The poem will resemble you

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The Beauty Queen

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Twitter exploded the second Olivia Jordan was crowned Miss USA. Her gown for the evening wear segment sparked controversy (aside from Donald Trump’s comments about Mexican immigrants during that same time). The dress polarized the Internet. Some loved it, while others hated it and thought she should not have won based on the dress. The dress was pink and strapless with a flowing skirt that had slanted lines of ruffles. In an interview with The Huffington Post Live, Jordan stated it was the dream dress of her five-year-old self.

A beauty queen’s dress is purely aesthetic and superficial. Her wardrobe choices are less important than who she is as an individual and what she represents. That ideology applies to Hailie Sahar, a pageant winner, whose story of triumph over adversity can be overlooked if the viewer only looks at the surface.

At In The Meantime’s pre-pride party, she dazzled the audience with her charm and hand placement-ography (choreography for a beauty queen’s hand). See her as the crowd saw her. First her dress, gray, and chic, paired smartly with an ornate gold necklace. Her sash for Miss L.A. Pride 2015 accentuated her figure. Then, her arms, bare and thin, then her flash of red hair. The spotlight caught her face at an angle that gave her the glow of a pregnant woman. She smiled, waiting for Karamo Brown to finish. They both were handpicked to be Brand Ambassadors for BrothaFest. Many of the people in the audience did not know (from only looking at her) that she was born in the wrong body and transitioned into her female body.

In a sit down interview, Sahar discussed the difficulty of being transgender, biracial, and young in L.A., being abused at a young age, and how she has overcome numerous obstacles to be a role model for girls like her.

What did it mean for you to be asked to be the Ambassador for BrothaFest?

It was touching to be asked to be an Ambassador for BrothaFest. I felt humbled. It meant that I was doing something good in life. It told me that I have a duty to be a role model as a transgender woman. Also, I saw it as a blessing.

Also, you were this year’s Miss L.A. Pride. Tell us about that experience.

It happened out of nowhere. One of the previous contestants called me the day before the pageant. I didn’t know too much about it. That experience was another blessing. Once I got there, I knew what it was working toward. And, being in the Parade was overwhelming. There were people crying and waving at me in the convertible that I was in. It furthered my belief that I had a duty to be a role model for others.

What were the components of the pageant?

There was a cocktail dress round, evening dress round, and Q&A round. The question that I was given was what was the most pivotal moment in your life as a trans person. I grew up being abused. Not too many people know that. I was also a preacher’s kid. Not too many people know that either. In that environment I was confused. I would go to church and a family member was abusing me. For me, to come out of that and be the person that I wanted to be in a religious and strict household that was my most pivotal moment. That’s why I want to tell my story. People might see me and say she’s beat or beautiful. But, no matter what I’ve been through or you’ve been through, you can still persevere and don’t let the situation mold you into a negative person.

What is it like to be transgender, young, and Black?

It is a lot of hard work. It takes discipline. As a minority and being biracial and transgender, you have to go through obstacles and then find your way in the world. As a trans person, it is often difficult trying to get people to understand who you are.

People don’t know what it means to be trans. They do not fully understand that your biological makeup can be different from your physical body. I have a doctor that I go to and l learned that there are studies looking at chromosomes when babies are born. Sometimes a child can be born in the male form, but the baby thinks in the female state. There are so many diversities of how people are born. People are visual. They trust that because you are born with a male body, you are male. But there is more to a person than their sexual parts. They are shallow-minded and see physical parts and identify that person as what they see.

Why did you come out as trans when you could pass as a biological woman?

I feel that it is a blessing to be passable. A lot of people don’t have that blessing to pass and be beautiful. I’m not saying that to be overly confident. When God gives you these gifts, you use them. I want to use my beauty and intelligence to uplift others and give back to people that do not blend into regular society. They will see someone like me and know that there are people like them that can be successful and achieve what they want in life. I’m Black and trans and am doing what I want to do. I like Laverne Cox and Janet Mock because they are going about it in a classy and elegant way. They are intellectuals and carry themselves well.

Who is the private Hailie?

I am a shy person and a workaholic. I have a hard time showing people my true self as I am. They might take me not opening up as being a diva, but that’s not the case. It takes a while for me to open up. Then you’ll see I’m a big kid. I love amusement parks and don’t take things too seriously.

Is the transgender community in L.A. connected or disconnected and how so?

In general, the transgender community is a bit disconnected. A lot of trans people are afraid because they do not know how they will be treated after they come out. They might be ridiculed. But I will say, this year there have been a lot of people in the public eye like Laverne Cox, Caitlyn Jenner, Isis King, and Janet Mock. People like me; we see more of it. I see it in the city and when I meet girls like myself, I see a spark in their eyes as we talk about the movement.

Do you have any trans mentors that have helped you during your transition?

I did not have a trans mentor to help me during my transition and do not now. In that sense, the trans community is detached. There is not a lot of help. I thank God that I have the mother that I have and my brother. My mother has helped me in my journey.

Last year, there was a huge scandal concerning “RuPaul’s Drag Race” and with the words “tranny” and “she-mail” being used. What are your thoughts on those words?

She-male is a pornographic term like cock or the p-word [or the female anatomy]. These words are used in a sexual environment. The word tranny is equivalent to the n-word. When someone says tranny, I hear the n-word. A lot of people are not educated. A lot of Black people aren’t educated [on the history of the n-word]. Also, a lot of trans people aren’t educated [on the history of the word tranny]. They go along with it and use it, not knowing that it means something sexual.

What would you like to leave our readers with?

I am following all my dreams. I am working on some acting projects, getting more into music, and doing more pageants. Follow my journey on Instagram at Hailiescommet and on Twitter at 213sahar.

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Updates/Lambda Literary Award

What a year it has been. And, none of it would have happened, if I continued to listened to the voice of doubt. Self-doubt and pessimism plague me on a consistent basis. However, after I published my novel, a number of miracles happened. I was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Debut Fiction. I had the opportunity to read at the Carl Bean House, the West Hollywood Library (with other Lambda finalists), and the Playa Vista Library. My crowning achievement was winning the Lambda at the Skirball Center for the Performing Arts in New York on June 6th.

The awards celebrated excellence in LGBT literature and 28 years of groundbreaking literary achievement. Back in March, when the finalists were announced the Lambda Literary Foundation revealed that over 933 submissions were received from major publishing houses, independent presses, and on-demand services from around the world.

The recognition has given the book greater visibility and presence. I will be forever grateful to the Lambda Literary Foundation for that.

The book can be purchased at Amazon or CreateSpace or Kindle or Barnes and Noble.

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Video: Proud Stories

Grand Park’s social media coordinator edited together this amazing video of Proud Stories. I am so honored that I was part of this inclusive and affirming event. My hairy mug makes an appearance at 1:26.

Victor Yates SOGIE Library Proud Stories

Q Youth Foundation’s SOGIE Human Library

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Proud Stories @ SOGIE Human Library

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The Q Youth Foundation curated the SOGIE Human Library at Grand Park’s Proud Stories on October 3, 2015. At Proud Stories, the community was invited to hear stories of love, acceptance, and joy through the powerful voices of L.A.’s LGBTQ and ally community. The PROUD Series celebrates the LGBTQ experience with readings, kids’ activities, and theater performances.

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During the SOGIE Human Library experience, guests were invited to flip through the catalog, read book summaries, check out a human book, and learn more about them. The human books’ role was to engage the reader to start a dialog in hopes to gain better understanding about alternative perspectives in the SOGIE/LGBTQIA+ community.

Aaron Saenz, a founding board member and current President of the Pasadena Pride Center, was one of the human books. Along with Amaury ‘Ketzal’ Reducino (behind East LA Art Walk), Claudia Rodríguez (writer/performer), Omowale Oniyide, Juan Castillo Alvarado (Latino Equality Alliance), Jesse Gutierrez (film director), Kyle Sawyer, Karene Daniel, Arturo Hernandez, and myself.

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Page from the Catalog

There was also a SOGIE Stories Recording Booth, were guests and human books recorded thoughts about, “Who they are proud to love?”

The event just happened to take place on the same day as Amber Rose’s “Slut Walk” and a sign language event. Therefore, the attendance was larger than normal.

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Page from the Catalog

Q Youth Foundation is a start up non-profit organization dedicated creating environments of Safe/Brave Spaces for LGBTQIA+/SOGIE community in Los Angeles.

Writers and performers from In The Meantime, Eastside Queer Storytelling, Asian Pacific Islander LGBTQ, Writ Large Press, Gender Justice LA Theatre, and Better Brothers LA shared their stories on the main stage.

Victor Yates A Love Like Blood writer

Page from the Catalog

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Book Tour News

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I am excited to announce the first stops in my book tour. The tour information is subject to change.

April 30: Oakland – The Knocturnal Project Presents Victor Yates at Qulture Collective
Address: 1714 Franklin Street, Oakland, CA 94607
Time: 6pm-9pm
Cost: $5

May 6: Palm Springs – Welcome Reception for Blatino Oasis with Johnnell Lyric Terrell at The Hyatt Regency
Address: 285 N. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92262
Time: 4pm-7pm
Cost: Free

May 24: West Hollywood – Lambda Literary Finalists Reading at West Hollywood Library
Address: Council Chambers – Lower Level 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Time: 7pm
Cost: Free

June TBA: Playa Vista – Playa Vista Library/Friends of the Public Library Present Victor Yates at Playa Vista Public Library
Address: Community Room – 6400 Playa Vista Drive, Playa Vista, CA 90094
Time: TBA
Cost: Free

June 5: Brooklyn – Victor Yates Reading
Address: Private Residence – Invite Only
Time: TBA
Cost: Free

June 24: Chicago – Ubuntu Center of Chicago Presents Victor Yates
Address: 1525 East 55th Street Suite 205 Chicago, IL 60615
Time: TBA
Cost: Free

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