Unlike years past, I am not freaking out about my wardrobe, the parties or the panels at this year’s BlogHer conference. After 3 years, I know what’s what and I know I’m going to have a fantastic time with my friends at the very least. I may learn a thing or two at a panel. I may make good writing connections. I may find some good swag to bring home to the boys. But all of that extra stuff is cake. Or maybe it’s vodka. Or vodka and cake.
Of course, it’s impossible for me to remain completely stress-free in these few weeks leading up to BlogHer. Obsessing helps me feel like I’m doing something important. The object of my angst and obsession this year? Business cards.
I have some business cards left from last year’s run, but I don’t have enough. Well no. I very well may have enough, but no Jewish girl would settle for just enough. Ever go hungry at a party hosted by a Jew? We over buy, over prepare and over feed. It’s what we do. It’s an oldy-worldy host thing. Just as well, really because I wouldn’t mind making a few minor tweaks to my business card – specifically to my title.
Freelance Writer & Blogger is fine, but it could be better, me thinks.
I could glam it up a bit. Publisher at Peaches & Coconuts. Yeah, that sounds good, right? But I do more than write blog posts for Peaches & Coconuts. When I’m left with a surplus of cards after the conference, will I be happy to use them in any capacity? Could I present them with pride to any publisher or literary agent or neighbor at the block party? Perhaps, I need a title with a wider scope.
I should take a one-title-fits-all approach and just use Writer. It’s simple and all encompassing like the word Queer was supposed to be for the LGBTQQWTF community – an umbrella word for all othered sexualities and genders. Not everyone was a fan. Some took issue with the historically negative connotations of the word and others felt it didn’t do justice to their own specific other-hood. And that is why, boys and girls and polygenders and nongenders and pangenders and omnigenders and et ceteras, many have rejected Queer and left us with an acronym that’s as long as a diner menu and whose string of initials vary depending on who got which memo regarding the groups that require representation. Luckily, there are no political snags associated with the title Writer.
Mommy Blogger on other hand, well that’s a completely different can of worms. I guess if I wanted to define myself as someone who only ever writes about motherhood and my children and the village it takes to … get me drunk after a week alone with them, I could use that title. So that’s not going on my card. Neither is Queer Mommy Blogger though it would certainly be a conversation starter, memorable even.
Writer is a safe choice, but it certainly doesn’t stand out as much as Queer Mommy Blogger. Perhaps it’s a bit too general, and I need to LGBTQQ it and represent all the kinds of writing I’ve done to date.
Columnist because I had an online column for a year and change.
Ghostwriter because I wrote an article for a friend that one time.
Journalist because once I wrote an article for a print newspaper.
I did get cash money for a sponsored blog post, so I could add Commercial Partner or Online Marketer or something more direct like Brand Whore.
I'm not feeling it.
I should really use a title with a bit more flair. Shouldn't a writer have a title that showcases a command of language and a bit of style. After reading a few articles like this one about the pros and cons of using creative job titles, I'm convinced I should consider some for myself. How about Keyboard Engineer or Deborah Be the Scrivener or Pun-tificator or TBD (Titles Be Deceiving)?
I don’t have the nerve to use any of those. I worry that someone, anyone, may read me as silly or dorky or juvenile or worse yet as someone who tried to be funny and failed. So, I should just stick to Blogger. Or Freelance Writer & Blogger. Or… shit.
Now I’ve spent far too much time thinking about a title, and I’m feeling the same kind of dizzying frustration that overwhelms me when I shop for clothes. I’m not even going to tell you how I feel about preparing my elevator pitch!
What's the title on your business card, and if I like it, can I use it, too?