Of all the odd jobs I have held in my life, I think my favorite was writing papers for Junglepage.com. (Check out the website when you have a moment, because it has remained unchanged since I was first hired in 2000.)
At the orthodontist’s office one afternoon, I was flipping through a magazine when an article about students buying papers caught my eye. Junglepage was one of the sites listed, so, like any budding capitalist, I checked out the service when I got home. Or maybe it was the next day; the orthodontist was a frequently painful, humiliating experience for me. Which meant I was properly prepared for the rest of my life.
Anyway, I submitted a sample essay and poof! I became a writer for hire. While still in high school.
That first year, I took on as many assignments as I could handle. On top of my own classwork and applying for colleges, I wrote papers on everything from Things Fall Apart (twice) to All Quiet on the Western Front. I was still writing for them during my junior year of college, at which point I had also contributed someone’s personal essay. All I remember about that was the student made a point of mentioning he was Chinese, which I worked in somehow. Probably in a racist way.
Hindsight imposing a narrative on memories, all of this was just an appetizer for the main course that became my unlikely, inadvertent career, but I was making pretty good money back in the day doing other people’s work. Oops, sorry: Writing papers as research and background for other people’s work.
[I just looked into re-applying, but as I didn’t save a single one of the many, many papers I wrote in college, I’m certainly not going to start one from scratch for free. Even I have my limits.]