One magazine intern’s New Year’s resolutions
This is the first year I am actually making resolutions as a magazine intern. At the end of 2013, while waiting to usher in 2014, I would have never imagined myself – ever – being involved in the magazine industry. Don’t get me wrong though, I love the creative arts. When I have spare time (which was mostly two years ago), I draw and paint. I had wanted to become an interior designer, although it’s one of those professions where you’re either fantastic and you make it, or you don’t. For me personally, doing it was a bit too risky, so I decided to go with the typical “degree that lets you do lots of things,” economics. So actually being involved in the creative industry came as a big surprise.
Fast forward to August 2014, where I applied to write for The West End Magazine. This story is still hilarious to me. I actually thought they were looking for paid writers, so I thought it might be a good way to make a few dollars to supplement my already very rich and lavish life as a university student (I kid, of course). I found out later that I had actually accepted the job as an unpaid magazine intern when I realised that I did not have to clock in for my hours. Oh well. The online manager was lovely, and I discovered that I really liked being on assignment (I had started out filling in social events on our calendar – an important task, although not as fun as actually going out and meeting people for stories). And so, I decided to stay on despite the fact that I have a supermassive PhD thesis deadline ahead of me. Academia, as I discovered early on in my studies, kills me, so writing for the magazine is my momentary escape.
With that said, you can’t just rock up to the office and write. Or at least that’s the impression I get. I look around in the office and there are these gorgeous girls with pretty faces, good skin, nice clothes, nice hair, nice… everything. And then I look at myself and see myself so deficient. I don’t actually have a body image issue, but being someone who pays attentions to artistic details, I see that my looks fall short. I usually don’t put on makeup, save for some brow powder. I don’t iron my clothes. I wear shoes that are comfortable to walk in – which sometimes mean one of those strappy Teva sandals. I have since worked a bit harder, trying on dresses and more colourful clothes and maybe the occasional face powder.
And so, I have decided to set resolutions for 2015 specifically for my continuing journey as a magazine intern.
Eat healthier. Because, if I look around the office, these girls have got great skin. My skin, in my opinion, is actually quite awful. I am haunted by the scars of my acne days. These things take forever to get rid of, if ever. And so, I am going to try to eat healthier so hopefully I can minimise the effects. It’s important to look radiant, I think.
Get creative clothes-wise. I’ve got some suits and dresses in my closet that I have hardly worn for the reason that I haven’t found the occasion to. But the weekly trek into the magazine office is reason enough. I need to stop being lazy and start dressing up, so my eagerness to come into the office shows in my clothes apart from the smile on my face.
Talk more. After meeting with more people from the magazine at our office Christmas party, I realise that despite everyone burying their heads deep into their work, they are all really approachable and sociable. I need to learn to chat more, with limits of course. Obviously not when I know we are trying to rush a publishing deadline. Talking more is a way of socialising and networking.
Be proactive and submit more writing ideas. One time while chatting to our online magazine manager, I realise that she likes people to take the initiative in proposing stories to her. I was doing that for some time, but because I kept interrupting her work, I felt a little bad and slowed down a bit. I suppose this goes hand-in-hand with resolution 3 where I should talk when appropriate and when I do, propose some story ideas.
Take on new challenges. One time, the online magazine manager proposed for me to write a story about a play. I thought I had to attend the play and then review it, but it turned out to be a media call for discussion with the directors of the play accompanied by two students. It was a great experience, and next time my manager proposes different activities, I am going to say yes! This reminds me, I really should start learning Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator too, since my next task is to get more involved with publishing stories on our online magazines (yes magazines – we have three!)
Work social media. I have been a slow adopter of Twitter and Instagram and things apart from Facebook. This year, I want to try to be more active in social media and learn the ropes. It’s a good skill to learn, I must say.
Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my resolutions, particularly if you’re a magazine intern too. What are yours?