Once a week or so, I check out the writing jobs on Craigslist. As a freelance writer, I'm always looking for new potential work. But, since it's Craigslist, where everything sucks (especially the Casual Encounteresses--rim shot!) it more becomes just looking at terrible, terrible, terrible jobs for shits and giggles.
"Excellent grasp of the English language."
These Craigslist writing jobs don't usually have the most demanding of standards. Like the job for an editor of a "Geek News" website who, most importantly, perhaps above all else, needs an excellent grasp of the English language. Lofty criteria. Don't be applying for that job if you use an interpreter.
"You will prepare grammatically correct and enticing copy."
Or how about the marketing copywriter gig that wants someone with the above ability? Sure, many people can write grammatically correct copy. Some people can write enticing copy. But few people can combine those two immense skills. I'd actually be curious what grammatically incorrect enticing copy would look like. Probably a bunch of emoticons and LOLs.
"An affinity for grammar."
Now you may be able to get some writing jobs by simply being grammatically correct. But for the truly great jobs, like the one for a restaurant review website, you're gonna need an affinity for grammar. You're gonna have to motherfucking LOVE grammar. Prepositions and adverbs and conjunctions and possessives and all that shit. Unfortunately, I merely like grammar.
"The candidate will also be required to have a strong knowledge of computers, internet, and Microsoft Office."
Well fuck, I thought we could still just hand write everything in #2 pencil.
Suffice to say, most of these plumb gigs pay about 10 cents per word.
If you have any intriguing writing offers, e-mail me at aaron @aarongoldfarb.com