Hey Bill, are you reading this?

Dear Bill Simmons:

Man, sometimes I feel like I’m never going to get a job at Grantland. Like, I’ll keep writing you these open letters every week, but that’s as far as my one-sided relationship with you is going to go. But I don’t know what else to do. Maybe a year or so ago, I wrote a real letter to you, to Grantland. I went to the web site and went to the “Contact Us” page and there was an email address to the editors. And I don’t remember what I wrote exactly, but it was all professional, like, “Dear editors: This is a very serious inquiry seriously inquiring about writing for Grantland,” blah blah blah.


And look, I know that you probably get way too much email to respond to, I get it. So I’m not mad or anything, it’s not like I take it as a personal snub. But it’s incredibly frustrating, to want something so bad, to want to be a professional writer, just throwing yourself out there on the Internet, over and over again, never getting any sort of response.

It’s like, even these letters, this whatever it is that I’m doing on my blog every week. Dear Bill Simmons: please give me a job. And then I go onto Twitter and tweet you a copy of the link, knowing that you get tons of tweets, that there’s no way you’re able to even view every tweet you receive, let alone consider a response.

But I don’t know what else to do. And it’s you, it’s Gawker, it’s all of these other professional high-trafficked web sites that publish all sorts of cool stories written by authors who, when I click on their profiles, they all look like they’re my age, like it shouldn’t be totally inconceivable that I could be doing what they’re doing.

It’s a tough job, getting a cool job, a job where you get to make stuff and write stuff and somehow earn money from it, enough money that you could theoretically support yourself. So far I think I’ve made about seventeen dollars from my writing. I don’t know how you do it, Bill, how you’ve built this media empire all based on your words, writing about sports, about pop culture, about stuff that you love.

Man, this is a pretty boring letter so far, I’m aware of that. I don’t know what it is, but I can’t think of anything to say right now. Last week I wrote about how I’d start from the bottom and work my way up. That was pretty cool, at least, it was cool in the way that I didn’t really have to think about it as I wrote it. The words just kind of flowed through me from somewhere else.

But right now, man, it’s really a struggle to get these sentences into paragraphs. You must be able to relate, right? I mean, you’ve done it, you’ve made it as a writer. What do you do when you can’t think of anything to write about? I’ve read all sorts of stuff on the topic, and most advice from professional writers always boils down to the inspiration/perspiration argument, that talent is cheap but work is hard.

And yeah, it’s hard to get this letter out there, I don’t know what to say, I’m feeling each week like I’m making a fool out of myself, desperately invoking your name on the Internet, like you’re magically going to swoop down from cyberspace and elevate my status from professional waiter to professional writer.

But isn’t that the kind of guy you want working for you at Grantland? Just think, I’m not afraid of my own self-imposed Internet writing deadlines. I need to write a letter to you every week. Why? I don’t know. I just made up a deadline and ran with it. Can you imagine what I’d do for you? For Grantland? Give me a deadline, and I’ll stick to it. I’ll get something out. I’ll perspire all over the place.

I guess that’s all I’ve got. Not very entertaining, I know, but sometimes you’ve just got to be willing to write something bad in hopes of eventually being able to maybe write something good. In the meantime, please read this letter from last week, the one I was telling you about just before. Also this letter, about a dream I had where you and I both went to space. That was a pretty cool one.

-Rob G.