Making a Silk Purse from a Panda's Kung-Fu-Sensitive Auditory Organ

Now you may or may not know that my Real Job-- if we peer out past the field o' Cabbages-- is writing marketing content for businesses. And I choose not to blog about it because:

1.) I like my job and want to keep things separate and

2.) Most of it involves me sitting in front of a computer for ten hours a day. This would not only make a lousy blog post, but a very poorly-rated episode of, say, "24."

Imagine, following me as I save clients from improper grammar and unsubstantiated product claims...

Join me as I process content for corporate legal review, including adding circles and arrows, and a paragraph on the back of each one, explaining what each one is to get their approval...

In fact, now that I think about it, the only things that would be even remotely similar to "24" would be:
  • The short deadlines
  • All the typing and frowning at the computer screen
  • Me pulling a Chloe and occasionally telling one of my coworkers, "Go away, I'm busy."

We don't even get to say "Keep me posted" very often... Though I think I'll try working that in more.

Anyway, so I don't really talk about my Real Job-- you know, except for those several big paragraphs above. But a recent incident gave me a chuckle which I thought I would share with you today.

Background is, when I'm tasked to write a web site or script, sometimes I don't receive much to work with from the client.

Sometimes I get very little information regarding their companies, their goals, or their products. And sometimes what I do get is the general equivalent of scribbles on a cocktail napkin.

There are some really great clients, mind you. A lot who are really helpful and have everything prepped that I could possibly need to work from. And I do appreciate it. But just as often, I'm doing detective work, online research, asking questions, and generally pulling sentences out of the air.

If Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry ever chose to offer a Professional Writing tract, those students would undoubtedly do very well in my field...

"Accio, Mission Statement!" they would shout. And poof! There would be a nicely-written "About Us" section to add to the beta site.

Well, I had a dream about my work the other night. And I dreamt that I had web site copy to write for a large corporation and the only documentation I had to work from was...

The script for Kung-Fu Panda.

You know-- that new cartoon where Jack Black channels the career of Chris Farley and does the voiceover for an inept, mystic, martial-arts-oriented Chinese bear?

Yup, that's the one.

And in the bizarre world that is my sleeping brain, I didn't even recall thinking it was odd. I DID, however, think:

"Hm-- I have to get this darned web site written in a day, now I have to parse something intelligent out of this Kung Fu Panda script, and I haven't even had time to see the film!...

I wonder if there are any particular sections they expect me to focus on?"
I woke up with the images of cutting and pasting panda-centric action scenes into a Word doc.

Well, naturally, when I got to work, I was feeling a bit better about the day ahead as a whole. I mean, I had some actual sales brochures to leverage for the site I had to write, as well as a decent online database. And it was entirely void of pandas-- giant, red or lesser.

So I know what you're going to ask. You're going to ask now: did you get it done in time? And how did the content turn out?

Well.. er...

I'll keep you posted.

I hear the pandas watch 24 AND Bruce Lee films over at Humor-blogs.


Alice said...

Completely off-topic, but do you do all your own cabbage pics like at the top of this post? I'm getting intrigues by all the graphics I'm seeing around and dying to lay may hands on Photoshop when I have 2 coins to rub together.

Jenn Thorson said...

Hey, Alice- Yup, I do create my own graphics. They're all done as various shapes and scribbles in Microsoft Word, and then screen captured.

I didn't want to have issues with copyright, and this way they're mine and they're post-specific.

Greg said...

Oh, it must've been a fun work week for you if you are dreaming about it...

Nice to hear you are still channeling your inner Chloe!

Jenn Thorson said...

Gregoire- It's been a dilly of a couple of weeks, really-- which is why I haven't emailed much. My first draft is due tomorrow. I will be smiling.