One thing I have learned from last year is to ignore the wiki, discussion boards, and most profession-oriented blogs (even this one once November hits, and I really do enjoy this blog [SS note: we don't mind if you keep reading us!]). Why? They make the situation worse. I somehow go from thinking about market-oriented stuff every 7 seconds to thinking about it every 2 seconds. In addition, none of the news is good, and some of the information should be re-classified as misinformation. Finally, after obsessing over the market so long and having that obsession exaggerated by watching the wiki, blogs, and discussion boards, it becomes very tempting to think that there is some kind of formula for getting THE job. There is not a formula. Teaching experience? Matters at some places to some people who may or may not be on the search committee. Same goes for publishing. Same goes for journal ranking. Same goes for pedigree. The truth is that applicants simply have to put themselves out there into the void and keep plugging along. There is no magic formula that works for the desirable jobs or for just any job.A wise person told me last year: you don't just need a good writing sample or good letters, you need everything to be good.. and for the hiring committee to like it.
-- Second Suitor