How to write a decent Résumé.

Essay by lancaster12High School, 10th grade February 2005

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Before you sit down to write (or fix) that résumé, the very first thing you should do is make a list of everything you've ever done or accomplished in your entire life. This means everything: every single job, award, honor, volunteer work, skill, language, hobby, wart, bad dream, and witty retort. Try to make the list chronological, starting with your most recent accomplishments, and working your way backward right up until you received your Quickest Passage Through The Birth Canal Award. We shall deem this list your "Fat List." Henceforth, when we speaketh of your Fat List, we speaketh of the list of your life, not the list of your daily fatty foods intake. Take very good care of this list. It is your new best friend.

Why the need for such a list? Three reasons:

1. Because you can now keep this list, add to it as you accomplish more things in your life, and pick and choose as you tailor your résumé for different job positions.

2. Because it's really really hard to remember everything off the top of your head, so this list will function as a reminder of those little details that may really impress a prospective employer.

3. Because seeing everything you've done on one list will help you remember things you've done that you can't fit on your résumé, but can still bring up in an interview.

All too often, people will look at their résumés, and hear a nagging voice in the back of their head telling them that something's missing. With a Fat List, you can rid yourself of such voices, or at least get them to change their messages to more interesting topics of conversation. Now don't get too detailed with this list. You don't have to write down everything you...